$25 Million Raised for Bargain Shopping

Retail Convergence, an e-commerce corporation based in Boston, today announced it has raised $25 Million from a number of investors, including New England Development, Breakaway Ventures, Mugar Enterprises, and General Catalyst. The newly formed corporation owns two online bargain retailers, both with headquarters in Boston: SmartBargains and RueLaLa.

The latter, which launched just two weeks ago, tries to bring an up-market attitude to online bargain hunting. (Think chic boutique, not Filene’s basement.) RueLaLa sells upscale brands, customers are recruited by invitation only, and each sale lasts just three days—after that, all the merchandise is taken off the site. RueLaLa even has annoying background muzak, just like a real boutique.

“By providing an exciting new shopping experience while vigorously protecting the integrity of our partner brands, Retail Convergence will elevate the ecommerce experience for everyone,” says Dennis Baldwin, managing partner at Breakaway Ventures in a press release.

Erik Mellgren is a Swedish journalist who worked for Xconomy Boston in 2008 as part of the Stanford Innovation Journalism Fellowship program. His real job is with Ny Teknik, a leading technology and innovation magazine in Sweden, but he loved seeing the Red Sox at Fenway. Follow @

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