Shoes Of Prey, a Sydney, Australia-based startup whose website lets women design and order customized footwear, has closed on $3 million in its first round of funding, the company is announcing today.
Shoes Of Prey has been bootstrapped since its launch in 2009. This new funding, which serves as the company’s Series A round, comes from Crunchfund, longtime VC Bill Tai, and Atlassian founder (and native Ozzie) Mike Cannon-Brookes. The company says it will put the new money toward building out its social shopping features, broadening its retail presence, and expanding its product offerings.
A bit more info on the company, for those TechCrunch readers who use their suede New Balance sneakers as their dressy shoes because at least they’re not Adidas shower sandals (a mentality that, for the record, I don’t hate, I appreciate): Shoes Of Prey’s site lets women customize and order their own personalized pairs of shoes on a web-based 3D design platform that purportedly lets them choose from some four trillion options in size, structure, and design.
The customization and service provided by Shoes Of Prey does not come cheap — a pair typically costs in the several hundreds of dollars — but you get exactly what you ask for, and for many people that is well worth it. The company has already attracted a loyal following of devotees (my super fashionable colleague Leslie is among them.)
One quibble I have is that in marketing materials, Shoes Of Prey often labels itself as “bespoke,” a term which many purists would say only applies if it’s made according to a buyer’s exact measurements. Shoes Of Prey lets women order shoes in their size — say, 6.5 or 7 or 8 — but it doesn’t require that they measure each foot to the precise length and width.
But those details don’t seem to bother everyone. According to the company, more than 10 million shoes have been designed on Shoes Of Prey, and users have logged more than 20 million minutes designing products on the site. It will be interesting to see how much more it grows with the new funding firepower.