Showroomprive secures 37m euros from Accel to expand and acquire

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Showroomprive, which claims to have the No. 2 spot in European private sales sites after Vente Privee, has raised 37 million euros from Accel Partners for a minority stake. The members’ only fashion e-commerce site which sells designer brands at discount prices was founded in France but entered the Spanish market this year and is growing quickly.

Three years after launch Showroomprive claims to be the second online sales site in France with 3 million members and 75 millions euros of revenue in 2009. It’s now aiming for 140 millions euros and
6 millions members. In 2010 it partnered with Orange.fr for “privileged sales,” launched in Spain and is soon launching a mobile app. Showroomprive will invest in a new warehouse to increase capacity and also look to acquire.

Yes folks, it’s time to roll-up all those private sales sites in Europe.

From an Accel perspective, this investment is part of a wider range of investments that they’re making in the area of ‘social commerce’ – where retailers use the social graph in some way to create new e-commerce models. Other investments of theirs in this space include Groupon, ModCloth, and KupiVIP (Russian site).

The investment was led by Acccel’s partners in London (Harry Nelis, whose investments include Gameforge and Kayak) and Palo Alto (by Ryan Sweeney – whose investments include Groupon and ModCloth). Both of them will be joining Showroomprive’s board. Accel is best known for investments in Facebook, Groupon, Kayak.com, Playfish, Gameforge and others.

Harry Nelis, Partner at Accel Partners says “There’s already a culture of looking for deals online and shopping socially, and the infrastructure in France ensures that goods are delivered quickly. Social commerce, where online retailers use the social graph, is coming of age. … It’s something we thought would happen for a while, but we can now clearly see the momentum through other investments such as Groupon, ModCloth, and KupiVIP.”

Showroomprive came about when French entrepreneur and Internet media specialist Thierry Petit joined with David Dayan, an entrepreneur in the stock clearance and private offline sales profession with Showroom30.

Some other data on Showroomprive:

- Revenue of 75 million euros in 2009
- 3 million members
- 1.5 million orders
- 300,000 visitors per day
- 70 sales per month
- 200 employees
- 25,000 sq.m. of warehouse

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