Sydney-based fashion tech startup Mon Purse has recently announced its expansion into the UK market through a partnership with department store, Selfridges.
The startup is based on a simple premise— handbags and leather goods designed and monogrammed by customers, made in Europe using high-quality leather and raw materials, and worn around the world. Mon Purse was first launched as an online store and later, branched out to a physical store and partnered with Myer to open design kiosks in Myer stores across Australia.
Mon Purse has been selling to over 30 countries, with an organic international and national sales growth. 90 percent of international sales come from the US and UK, and expanding into these markets was the next logical step for the startup after its Australian growth.
Co-founder of Mon Purse, Lana Hopkins says,
The UK is a progressive fashion-savvy market, consisting of both local and international shoppers and Selfridges are a global leader in retail. The UK market in many ways shares Australian values. The population is three times that of Australia, so this made sense scalability wise. We have always seen Mon Purse as a global channel brand, so we took the Australian case study to the UK and they loved it.
The deal with Selfridges came shortly after raising $3.1 million in a Series A round from investors including Catch Group’s Gabby and Hezi Leibovich, Jonathan Lui, Rolf Krecklenberg of oo.com, and Macdoch Ventures, with Spreets founder and existing investor Justus Hammer joining the startup’s board to push expansion in US markets.
This is the first concession partnership that Selfridges has signed with an Australian brand. Caroline Fielder, contemporary accessories buyer at Selfridges, saying the company embraces Hopkins’ vision of “combining innovation with the very best of craftsmanship.” Fielder said,
We are very excited to partner with Mon Purse, and be the first retailer to allow customers to monogram, customize and design a one-of-a-kind bag to create a truly personal product.
With the Selfridges concessions in place just in time for the Christmas rush, Hopkins said a similar partnership in the US is imminent, while expansion into continental Europe and Asia is also on the cards. The US launch will be pushed by a strategic design collaboration with Laura Brown, editor in chief of Instyle USA.