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Millennial makeup company Glossier Inc. just became New York’s latest tech unicorn.
The beauty startup that sells directly to consumers online is now valued at more than $1.2 billion after its latest funding round, according to two people familiar with the company who didn’t want to be named because the matter is private. Glossier raised $100 million from investors led by Sequoia Capital, the company said in a statement Tuesday.
Glossier started as a beauty blog in 2010 and has since morphed into one of the rare makeup companies that does almost all of its business online.
Glossier doesn’t sell products at department stores or specialty shops such as Sephora. Instead the company promotes its house-brand serums, balms and milky cleansers to 1.9 million followers on Instagram. Glossier products are sent to consumers in baby pink boxes along with a baby pink bubble pouch for carrying the items and sticker sheets to “bling up” makeup bags.
“We are building an entirely new kind of beauty company: one that owns the distribution channel and makes customers our stakeholders,” Emily Weiss, founder and chief executive officer, said in the statement. By connecting directly with consumers, Glossier has access to “endless inspiration for new products,” she said.
Founded in 2014, Glossier now has more than 200 employees and operates in the U.S., Canada, the U.K., Ireland, France, Denmark and Sweden. Its annual revenue more than doubled in 2018 to surpass $100 million, the company said.
Other investors in the latest funding round include Tiger Global Management, Spark Capital and existing investors Forerunner Ventures, Thrive Capital, IVP and Index Ventures.
Michael Abramson, a partner at Sequoia, said Glossier had built an “exceptional” relationship with its customers. “This is one of the most efficient direct-to-consumer businesses we’ve encountered, and with this new capital, we believe Glossier is well positioned to define the next era of the beauty industry,” Abramson said in the statement.
The company also announced that Vanessa Wittman, formerly chief financial officer at Dropbox Inc. and Motorola Mobility Holdings Inc., will be joining as its CFO.
Written by Olivia Carville for Bloomberg