Design Marketplace Minted Raises $41 Million in its Series C Financing, Doubles Revenue Year-to-Date in 2013 Following Cash-Flow Positive Year in 2012
Technology Crossover Ventures leads the financing, which will help Minted scale its stationery business and extend its crowd-sourcing model to new categories, including wall art and party decor.
SAN FRANCISCO, Oct. 16, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Minted (www.minted.com), the online marketplace for independent design and art, today announced that it raised $41 million in its Series C financing, led by Technology Crossover Ventures. Allen & Company and existing investor Benchmark Capital both participated as investors in this round. Kevin and Julia Hartz, Co-Founders of Eventbrite, are among the angels who participated in the Series C round, joining Minted angels that include Marissa Mayer, Jeremy Stoppelman, and many others. Minted is an online marketplace that crowd-sources and sells graphic design and art from a global community of thousands of independent designers. The company produces beautifully designed premium products for the home, holidays, and occasions.
Minted will use the funding to scale to fulfill strong demand in its core stationery business and to extend its crowd-sourcing model to new categories, including its new wall art and party decor businesses.
Woody Marshall, General Partner at Technology Crossover Ventures, joins Minted's board of directors.
"I have long believed that the online environment would radically alter and grow the stationery and design markets," said Marshall, whose firm TCV invested in online stationer TinyPrints before its acquisition by Shutterfly. "Minted's crowd-sourcing model is a game-changer in this industry, creating superior design, assortment, and speed to market."
"Minted believes in the power of the individual to influence design," said Mariam Naficy, Minted's Founder and CEO. "Our mission is to find and nurture great designers, no matter where they are in the world, and enable them to bring their vision to consumers in the form of premium products. We are excited to partner with TCV and other highly-experienced new investors to continue building a marketplace that brings together consumers and independent designers."
Minted's Crowd-Sourcing Model
Minted was an early pioneer of crowd-sourcing product design, and has held open art and graphic design challenges monthly over the past six years. Designers collaborate on Minted's community platform and provide peer critiques to each other. Consumers and designers curate Minted's product assortment by voting on the entries to each challenge, ensuring that the best designers and designs are surfaced and represented on Minted. Minted manufactures and sells the winning designs, paying the designer a commission on every sale.
Earlier this week, the company announced its first crowd-sourcing retail partnership, providing West Elm with an exclusive selection of Minted-branded wall art sourced through a competition held on Minted's community platform.
A Multi-Category Lifestyle Brand for Women Who Love Design
For consumers, Minted is a multi-category lifestyle brand that currently operates in three large categories – stationery, wall art, and party decor – which, combined, represent a $65 billion market.
"I am amazed by Minted's growth over the years and how it has helped me build a successful business not only in stationery, but also in art and party decor," said Kelli Hall, an independent designer from Atlanta, GA who entered her first Minted design challenge in 2008. "Minted truly nurtures independent designers and helps us compete with large, established brands."
Minted Was Cash-Flow Positive in 2012 and Accelerated Revenue Growth in 2013
"I'm proud to announce that Minted was cash-flow positive in 2012," said Naficy. Minted's year-over-year revenue growth is accelerating and is now growing more than 100% year-over-year.
Minted now has more than 115 full-time employees, doubling in size in the past year. The company plans to continue to rapidly hire on its engineering, design, and business teams.
Prior to this round, Minted had raised $11 million from investors including IDG Ventures, Benchmark Capital, and Menlo Ventures.
Minted is an online marketplace for independent design and art. Minted crowd-sources graphic designs and art from a global design community and sells those as premium printed products focused on the $10 billion stationery market, the $48 billion wall art market, and the $7 billion party decor market. Investors include IDG Ventures, Benchmark Capital, Technology Crossover Ventures, Allen & Company, Menlo Ventures, Yahoo! CEO Marissa Mayer, Yelp CEO Jeremy Stoppelman, and Eventbrite Co-Founders Kevin and Julia Hartz.
Minted has radically transformed what consumers now expect in holiday cards, wedding invitations, framed art, party decor, and personal stationery. Minted's fresh, unique designs have been featured on The Today Show, The Early Show, and in The Wall Street Journal, Real Simple, Town & Country, InStyle, Martha Stewart Weddings, Food & Wine and other major national magazines.
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