Poshmark Picks Up $87.5M to Power the Social, Digital Wardrobe

Xconomy San Francisco — 

Poshmark, a social media e-retail company, has raised $87.5 million in a Series D investment round led by Singapore sovereign wealth fund Temasek.

That brings the total funding raised by the Redwood City, CA-based company to $160 million. Other investors in the firm include Mayfield, Menlo Ventures, GGV Capital, Inventus Capital, SoftTech VC, Union Grove Venture Partners, and Cross Creek Advisors.

Poshmark is an online marketplace where individuals can buy and sell clothing, shoes, accessories, and other products. Users create an account with information such as their clothing size, which Poshmark uses to filter items that it shows them. Users create feeds on the site from others they are following and attend themed “Posh Parties” such as “wardrobe goals” or “best in jeans.”

In addition to the funding announcement, Poshmark said it has started a service called Poshmark Stylist Match, which connects shoppers, via Amazon’s Alexa, to Poshmark’s “Seller Stylists” in real-time to receive personal styling advice. People are matched using algorithms that assess a user’s needs and find other users that can address them.

“With the introduction of social styling, we’re revolutionizing the way people shop by combining data, social interactions, and people-powered commerce to create a fashion mall for the Instagram generation,” Manish Chandra, founder and CEO of Poshmark, said in a press release.

Stylist Match works like this: a user asks Alexa to ask Poshmark to “style me.” Alexa will ask what event the customer is seeking advice for, such as “date night” or “day at the office.” Users will then be matched with other users who can best answer the query. The sartorial counsel gets sent to an online “dressing room” that each shopper sets up.

Chandra said in the release that the company’s social media-driven community represents the future of retail by providing the sort of social interactions that are more associated with traditional stores and not normally found in the online retail environment.

Poshmark was started in 2011 in order to take advantage of what co-founder Tracy Sun said was the coming wave of mobile-first retail. “It’s hard to launch a mobile experience as an add-on,” Sun said in an April interview with Glossy. “It’s hard to put in the resources otherwise.”

Poshmark is among a group of online marketplaces for second-hand clothes such as ThredUp and Tradesy, but one of the ways the startup has sought to be different was to enter the wholesale market. In late 2015, Poshmark executives decided to form relationships with retailers to become what Sun called, in an interview with Digiday, the “Salesforce of fashion.”

Sun said Poshmark’s executives noticed their users going to stores like Nordstrom Rack and selling “new with tags” clothes on the site. Now, Poshmark—through its “Wholesale Portal”—gets those items directly and then earns a 20 percent commission when those items are sold on the site. (Wholesale Portal is an invite-only site within Poshmark that connects retailers with verified sellers, who must have completed at least 10 transactions and have a 4.5 or higher rating.)

Poshmark says shoppers spend 25 minutes each day on the site and that its users share seven million items daily. The company started lines for men and children, which executives say is growing.

In April, TechCrunch reported that Poshmark was on track to hit $100 million in revenue this year, double its 2016 take. The publication pointed out that the hiring of Anan Kashyap as its new CFO signaled an interest in taking the company public, something that Kashyap said the company was considering, according to an interview in The Wall Street Journal.