Textile e-commerce: Asphalte raises 5 million euros

Asphalt continues to expand. The online clothing sales site, founded in 2016 by William Hauvette and Rodolphe Gardies, announced on March 22 that it had raised five million euros from four investment funds, Quadia, a Swiss specialist in investments in impact companies; M Capital Partners; Kostogri, investment company of Nicolas Béraud, founder and managing director of the sports betting site Betclic; and NACO. The two partners remain the majority shareholder.

This is his first fundraiser. Until now, the specialist in the sale of clothing in pre-order operated in self-financing. The 2022 financial year, marked by a stabilization of sales at 22 million euros and operating income close to break-even, encouraged the partners to find funds to support its development in new markets.

A specialist in men’s fashion, the site launched its first women’s lines last year and expanded its business abroad with versions in English and German. According to Mr. Hauvette, his first steps in Germany, Austria, the Netherlands and Scandinavia are encouraging. This fundraising should allow the site to recruit new employees. Established in Bordeaux since its inception, the company now employs around forty people.

Permanent sale extra

The use of this fundraising comes as the clothing market is going through an unprecedented crisis, including on the Internet. After soaring in 2020 and 2021, online clothing sales suffered from a decline in 2022. The war in Ukraine has also increased manufacturing costs, especially for start-ups specializing in pre-order sales. . So much so that this model falters.

Customers are now reluctant to buy these quality garments produced on demand and delivered within a few months. ” The year 2022 has been heckled recognizes Mr. Hauvette. Asphalte has already revised its model to permanently sell items for men and women, in addition to the collections sold for pre-order.

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Réuni, another site which, in 2019, had launched on this model considered virtuous, was forced to put its activity ” on break “specifies its co-founder Adrien Garcia, who plans to relaunch in 2024. On Instagram, the SME, whose turnover reached one million euros in 2022, announced that it was selling its last pieces.

Despite these economic difficulties, the manufacturer ensures that the first months of 2023 give the site hope for a return to growth. He has just launched his first women’s jeans for pre-order. Like many of its acolytes, the company has chosen to produce it in Portugal, from Italian denim. Asphalte, which aims to convert Europeans to buying more sustainable and locally produced clothing, hopes to sell at least 3,000 copies.

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