fashion

Ankorstore raises 250 million euros in Series C funding round


French start-up Ankorstore, the wholesale marketplace for independent retailers across Europe, has raised a 250 million euros Series C funding round, reaching unicorn status in just two years with a valuation of 1.75 billion euros.

Founded in 2019 by four French e-commerce entrepreneurs, Pierre-Louis Lacoste former Etsy country manager, Nicolas d’Audiffret and Nicolas Cohen founders of A Little Market, and Mathieu Alengrin, the former head engineer at Vestiaire Collective, Ankorstore allows independent brands to sell their products to independent retailers.

In just two years, the Ankorstore business-to-business marketplace designed to level the playing field for independents has attracted 200,000 retailers and 15,000 brands across Europe and has reported that sales volume increased by 950 percent between 2020 and 2021.

The 250 million euro Series C funding round was led by Bond and Tiger Global with the participation of Eurazeo and Coatue as well as all existing investors Index Ventures, Bain Capital Ventures, GFC, Alven and Aglae.

Ankorstore explained that the investment would be used to expand geographically, currently, it operates in 23 countries, and accelerate its activities in its core European market, including the UK, France, and Germany. In addition, it has plans to add new categories such as sports and wellbeing and pets to its current five key retail sectors – home, grocery, fashion, beauty and kids.

Nicolas Cohen, co-chief executive and co-founder of Ankorstore, said in a statement: “Our mission is to create a global wholesale business to swing the balance in favour of independents. We want to make things easy and simple for brands and independent retailers to do business together, being a part of their daily lives and changing the outdated habits of how retail works today – for the better.

“This funding will allow us to expand geographically and accelerate activities in our European core markets. Today, we operate in 23 countries and have offices in Paris, London, Berlin, Amsterdam and Stockholm. In 2022 we will open offices in Italy and Spain so we can be as close to our brands and retailers as possible.”

Ankorstore reaches 1.75 billion euro valuation two years after launching its B2B marketplace for independents

Ankorstore has offices in Paris, London, Amsterdam, Berlin and Stockholm and employs 400 people. The marketplace has been designed to equip independent retailers with the tools and terms to grow and manage their business and enables brands to build their wholesale business across Europe. Terms include allowing retailers to pay up to 60 days after ordering something with no hidden fees, as well as purchasing from multiple brands in a single order.

Image: Ankorstore

Nicolas D’Audiffret, co-chief executive and co-founder of Ankorstore, said: “We needed an extraordinary team to scale up as fast as Ankorstore has. That’s why I want to thank the entire team who has been instrumental in helping us grow from 0 to 400 employees, from 0 to 15,000 brands and into a unicorn valuation in only two years. There are very few companies in the world that have accomplished this in such a short time. This is just the beginning of our mission to empower independent retailers.

“As we speak, we’re hiring top talent from across Europe, to strengthen our collaboration with brands and retailers and to develop our local sales and customer support to offer the best customer experience, so that retailers can order easily and with no risk. We plan to scale both horizontally and vertically by adding new product categories and features. We recently added two new categories ‘sports and wellbeing’ and ‘pets’ to our five core product categories and will continue to invest in major product and tech developments to improve the customer experience for our community.”

Mood Rowghani, general partner at Bond, who will be joining the Ankorstore board as a director, added: “Ankorstore is building the next generation operating system for retail. Through its rapidly scaling cross-border wholesale network, the company provides best-in-class infrastructure for thousands of brands and independent stores worldwide. We are inspired by Ankorstore’s leadership team and its bold vision – transforming commerce and unlocking powerful new opportunities across the retail value chain.”



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