Interview With Tradesy Founder Tracy DiNunzio
Tradesy is a website that launched last week, though its concept and business model have been tested and refined over several years. Many people have closets that are overwhelming, yet they feel like they have “nothing to wear.” A lot of the clothes sitting in the closet end up getting neglected.
The founder of Tradesy, Tracy DiNunzio, told me that in the last one year, women have only worn clothes that are 20% of their wardrobe. “The other 80% could be a goldmine.” The problem in the pat was there was no other trusted online platform to sell the clothes.
Ms. DiNunzio also founded Tradesy’s sister site, RecycledBride, which is a P2P marketplace for selling wedding fashion and accessories like wedding dresses. RecycledBride became profitable in under a year based on her ability to build the business using Airbnb to support herself. This way the money earned from the business could be used to reinvest into itself.
Ms. DiNunzio was able to make $28,000 off Airbnb to rent out the two rooms in her place while she slept on the couch. After 2 years of running RecycledBride and proving to herself that she knew what she was doing, Tracy went out to look for investors and advisors.
Ms. DiNunzio works closely with USPS to set up the shipping of Tradesy goods and they are focused on finding brands that women love for a lower cost. Transaction data is collected so that it can be plugged into a dynamic pricing suggestion and recommendation engine for consumers.
Best of all listing on Tradesy is free! If a good is sold, then Tradesy will take only a 9% cut. Tradesy’s customer service is on-hand visually around 24 hours per day. Every employee at Tradesy does the customer service and manages the entire shipping process.
Currently Tradesy has 9 full time employees. They are building the team and are focused on customer acquisition. Tradesy also has a mobile application that makes listing items for sale quick and easy.
Tradesy raised $1.5 million in Series A funding from Rincon Venture Partners, 500 Startups (founded by Dave McClure), Dany Levy (founder of DailyCandy), Daher Capital, Bee Partners, Double M Capital, and Launchpad LA. The fashion resale opportunity is a $165 billion market according to Tradesy’s research.
“My dream is to show women how to turn their closets into currency,” stated Tracy DiNunzio. “We view our belongings as things that we ‘own’ and are, in a sense, stuck with. But what if we could all see our wardrobes as interchangeable, and our clothing as assets that hold value? Then more women would have access to the fashion that makes them look and feel great, without the stress of overspending.”
Some of Tradesy’s unique features include:
- Pricing Recommendation Engine: A unique algorithm provides users with pricing recommendations based on what’s selling on Tradesy, current trending styles and brand insights to maximize sales potential.
– Free and Easy Shipping: Shipping, packaging, and insurance are included in the price of every item on Tradesy.com. When an item sells, Tradesy sends a prepaid shipping kit to the seller’s doorstep, with the buyer’s address already in place.
– Hassle-Free Returns: Tradesy is one of the only online peer-to-peer marketplaces that accept returns, alleviating the uncertainty of buying online from individual sellers.
– The Tradesy Trust Promise: Sellers are paid only once they’ve shipped their items, and their shipping tracking number is activated. Any seller who has misrepresented an item on Tradesy is banned, and the cost of the item is refunded in full to the buyer.
– Video: In addition to posting images, sellers may also add video to their listings. Videos allow sellers to show off product attributes in detail.
– Beautiful Images: Tradesy improves the quality of item images uploaded by sellers, which in turn improves sales, by cleaning the background from each photo and enhancing image quality.
– Follow trends and alerts: Tradesy created a tool where you can “follow” other women of a similar size and taste. Find the personality behind each unique piece, and be the first to know about it. Users can sign up to be alerted when interested item is listed that they were looking for or marked down in price.
– Mobile App: For on-the-go selling, Tradesy’s mobile app lets sellers post items using a simple, 60-second mobile listing process.
This article was written by Amit Chowdhry. You can follow me at @amitchowdhry or on Google+ at +AmitChowdhry