Kim Kardashian’s co-founded apparel company, Skims, has become a unicorn four times in its four years of existence.
Skims has raised $270 million in a new funding round, valued at $4 billion, the company said Wednesday. That’s up from the $3.2 billion valuation investors gave the company last year.
Kardashian and business partner Jens Grede have worked to build Skims into the next big apparel brand.
“It’s growing fast and I’m very proud of it,” Kardashian said in an interview. “We have a very good flow in terms of product launches.”
The company started out as a shapewear seller that helped customers put on form-fitting clothing. However, shapewear is no longer the majority of sales. Skims has expanded into various clothing categories, including loungewear and swimwear, and plans to expand into menswear this fall.
And Skims, once known for its direct-to-consumer sales, is taking a bet on brick-and-mortar stores, with plans to open its first flagship stores in Los Angeles and New York City next year.
Skims CEO Grede said in an interview that the company is now profitable and on track to reach $750 million in revenue this year from $500 million in 2022. rice field. About 15 percent of the company’s online customers come from outside the United States. Nearly 70% of his total customers are Millennials or Generation Z.
Last year, 11 million people were on waiting lists to buy the brand’s most popular items, which often sell out, he said.
Grede said its growth trajectory and popularity drew investors to the company when executives began raising money in recent months. Asset manager Wellington Management led the latest round. Other participating companies include Greenoaks Capital Partners and existing backers D1 Capital Partners and Imaginary Ventures.
“Skims has maintained unprecedented momentum since the brand’s inception,” Michael Carmen, co-head of private investments at Wellington, said in a statement. “We are thrilled to partner with the brand to support this pivotal phase of growth.”
Skims’ success has made it the most prominent of Kardashian’s business empires, which now include skincare, fragrances and even cosmetics. private equity firm. Kardashian, who is already a billionaire after Skims’ 2021 funding round, remains the company’s sole largest shareholder, and together she and Gredde still own a majority stake.
Skims initially had to deal with supply chain disruptions caused by the pandemic, making it difficult to source fabric for its clothing.
Kardashian and Greedo said the big challenges right now include managing inventory as the company expands its offerings and opening brick-and-mortar stores; This includes competition from companies offering substantial discounts. . This is a problem that plagues many retailers and will become even more pressing as Skims opens its own stores, Kardashian said.
Skims’ latest investment is likely to fuel questions about when it plans to go public, given the company’s skyrocketing valuation and the involvement of Wellington, which is known for investing in pre-listed companies. The apparel maker has taken other steps typical of companies gearing up for new business, including hiring a chief financial officer last year.
Grede hesitated about the timing, saying neither he nor Kardashian was in a hurry. But he said investors have shown interest in the consumer business in recent months.
And going public remains one of the company’s goals. “At some point in the future, Skims deserves to be a public company,” he said.