Online luxury consignment retailer The RealReal may be a unicorn–no, not the mythical animal in this case, but almost as rare. In the world of finance, a unicorn is a private company valued at over $1 billion. The RealReal will attain that coveted status if it sells the $70 million in shares it recently authorized.
The e-commerce company has raised a total of $288 million via both venture capital and private investors. According to Pitchbook, The RealReal was valued at $745 million in July of 2018.
Julie Wainwright, founder and CEO of The RealReal has goals to go public with the company and could have an IPO (Initial Public Offering) as early as 2020. As The RealReal grows it’s setting its status amongst other e-commerce giants such as Poshmark, Glossier and Rent the Runway.
Part of The RealReal’s success is how it sets itself apart from other retailers. One way they do this is by authenticating the established luxury brands they sell. They use in house experts and authenticators to verify the products.
The company also predicts trends based on their inventory from consigners and who is buying what and when. This keeps them ahead of the curve, and appeals to the millennials that make up a third of their buyer base. The RealReal also branched out after realizing the only option to buy and sell used jewelry was at places like pawnshops. Having a trusted online marketplace for these transactions filled a niche.
It’s not surprising that The RealReal is doing this well in the e-commerce game considering CEO Julie Wainwright’s past experience as CEO of Dot.com era company Pets.com. Since 2011, The RealReal has steadily proven its ability to become a powerhouse online retailer through its impressive growth and success.
The RealReal will likely continue to grow. With its active presence on social media, ability to predict trends and its proven record of securing funding, the company is well on its way to unicorn status. The next step is going public, so The RealReal is a company to keep an eye on.
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