PARIS, France — Online product discovery platform Rad is set to announce a €2.5 million ($3.4 million) Series A round of funding led by Index Ventures, with the participation of angel investors including Nicolas Santi-Weil, founding partner of The Kooples, who will be joining Rad’s board, and the Vaizra Seed Fund, based in New York. The valuation of the company was not disclosed.
Self-financed and launched only 11 months ago by David Smadja, Anthony Serero, Simon Amzalag and Julia Serero, the Paris-based Rad, which offers limited-time ‘private’ sales of indie fashion, art and design products, has attracted almost 1 million users and is on track to reach revenues of €15 million ($20 million) in its first fiscal year, according to figures supplied by the company.
The injection of funding will allow Rad to expand its current team and invest in logistics, production and marketing in preapration for a planned rollout in the UK and Germany. The company aims to reach €40 million ($54 million) in revenue in 2014.
“We launched Rad in an effort to come up with an alternative to traditional private sale websites like Vente-Privée.com. While Vente-Privée sells old collections from mass market brands, the idea here was to offer indie fashion and cool current products at a discounted price and for a limited time to our members,” co-founder David Smadja told BoF.
But in the coming months, the company plans to significantly evolve its model. “Our business model is currently based on Vente-Privée.com, but we're going to a totally different place,” revealed Smadja. “Today, we hunt for new designers and brands from all over the world and offer them for a limited time to our members at a preferred price. Now, the idea would be to go towards an incubator of some sort for these designers that often cannot create products for themselves. Rad would be a place to find unique and fresh products.”
The company is “currently doing this with graphic artists and photographers and we plan to do that with fashion designers as well,” he continued. Designers who create and sell products with Rad will earn a percentage of sales, though specific economic terms have not yet been determined.
“In terms of execution, they are one of the fastest [growing companies] we have ever come across. Very few companies can grow from zero to an 8-digit run rate in less than a year with no external funding, which Rad did,” Martin Mignot, a principal at Index Ventures, told BoF. “And it's not only operational skills, it's also that they have this unique understanding of brand, fashion and design which makes people want to wear and buy the products they are selling.”
Disclosure: Index Ventures is part of a consortium of investors which has a minority stake in The Business of Fashion.