By Sara Pendleton
Fashion Project, the leading online clothing donation destination secured $7.2 million in Series A funding from a group of private investors including Second Time Around (STA), Simon Venture Group, Burch Creative Capital, Robert Hall of Vera Bradley, RiverPark Ventures, Schooner Capital, and Abundance Partners. This funding marks the largest investment in the two-year-old startup to date. Funds are earmarked for growing its workforce, facilities expansion and increasing its charitable partner network.
Since its inception in 2012, Fashion Project has grown significantly year-over-year. In Q3 2014, the company recorded 300 percent growth across all aspects of business. This latest round of funding enables the company to grow its workforce and strengthen marketing, technology and operational infrastructures. Plans also include the addition of a new warehouse facility and photography studios that will triple the amount of merchandise listed daily and enhance the shopper experience. Finally, the brand will more than double its network of charity partners, providing non-profits with funding for much-needed tools and resources.
“Fashion Project is an innovative company that’s disrupting clothing donation and making it better through transparency and monetization,” said STA CEO Kristin Burrows. “Our businesses are complementary, and together we can offer a broader portfolio of services. We’re thrilled to help Fashion Project attain the resources they need to scale operations and are tremendously excited for the growth that lies ahead.”
Fashion Project, which donates the majority of net proceeds of each sale to the charity of the donor’s choice, supports more than 2,000 non-profits and has raised over $400,000 for charities including Dana Farber and The Jimmy Fund, Big Brother Big Sister, Dress for Success and Autism Speaks. The company has received 220,000 donated items including clothing from high-profile celebrities such as Heidi Klum and Chelsea Handler.
“The support from established members of the retail and consignment communities speaks volumes about their commitment to using fashion as a force for good,” said Anna Palmer, CEO of Fashion Project. “Christine and I started this company to raise as much money as possible for charity and this funding is the fuel we need to grow that impact from hundreds of thousands to millions of dollars per year.”