- Herbivore — a Seattle-based GMO-free skincare brand founded by a husband and wife team — announced it raised $15 million
Back in 2011, Alexander Kummerow bought his wife Julia Wills a soap making kit in 2011 as a gift. Later that year, the couple started a non-toxic therapeutic product in their kitchen at home in Seattle called Herbivore. And Herbivore recently announced it raised $15 million Series A funding led by Silas Capital with participation from Stage 1 Fund.
“Skincare was the initial category to embrace clean beauty, and Herbivore was one of the original brands helping to pioneer that movement. Having bootstrapped the business to date, we are eager to leverage this capital infusion to expand our manufacturing capabilities and increase brand awareness through digital and in-store marketing,” said Kummerow in a statement.
The awareness of Herbivore was largely driven by social media. And the company’s line of more than 35 SKUs range from skincare to bath and body, formulated with pure, active, highly concentrated vitamins, minerals, and botanicals. And the company currently sells through more than 500 doors globally, including prominent retailers such as Nordstrom, Credo, Space NK, Carbon Beauty, Follain, and Sephora where it launched in 2015 and now represents one of the retailer’s fastest-growing and most productive skincare brands.
“This is a tremendously exciting time for Herbivore. With Silas and Stage 1 Fund on board, along with our highly talented and growing executive leadership team and staff, we are well-positioned for strategic and meaningful growth as we continue to solidify our standing as a category leader in clean skincare,” added Wills.
In terms of revenue, it was reported in an LA Times article a few years ago that the company was on track to hit $6 million in 2016, up from $2.2 million the previous year. And Owler estimates that the company now generates nearly $10 million.
“We have tremendous respect for what Alex and Julia have been able to accomplish in a relatively short period of time without the benefit of any outside invested capital to date. Herbivore’s 100% natural formulations uniquely marry tangible results and sensorial luxury at an accessible price point – a proposition that has earned the brand its coveted status among consumers, influencers, retailers and investors alike. Already one of the fastest-growing skincare brands at Sephora, we look forward to strengthening that relationship, while amplifying the company’s e-commerce business and sizeable Instagram presence,” explained Silas partner Brian Thorne.
Herbivore’s products are created with natural ingredients, plant-based food-grade cold-pressed oils, steam distilled therapeutic-grade essential oils, GMO-free soy wax, recyclable and reusable packaging, many certified organic ingredients. And the products do not contain synthetic ingredients, parabens, sodium laurel sulfate, phthalates, chemicals, fillers, animal testing, mineral oils, petroleum.
“Having worked closely with the company as a financial consulting resource over the past few years, we’re excited to further reinforce our partnership – as Herbivore is one of the initial investments of our recently launched venture capital fund. We believe that the business has tremendous upside and look forward to continuing to help the Alex and Julia meet the insatiable consumer demand for their products,” noted Stage 1 Fund partner Jeremy Triefenbach.
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