Last year, lingerie startup ThirdLove took on Victoria’s Secret in a full-page ad in the New York Times, calling the company out for its lack of body inclusivity and its hypersexual marketing. But ThirdLove is also trying to chip away at Victoria’s Secret’s market dominance by expanding quickly.
Today it announces that it has landed $55 million from some prominent investors, including L.Catterton, the private equity firm owned in part by luxury conglomerate LVMH and Groupe Arnault. Other individual investors including 23andMe founder Anne Wojcicki and her sister, YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki. This brings its total funding to $68 million.
ThirdLove launched in 2013 with the goal of offering women a better-fitting bra, one that was both attractive as well as comfortable. The company has focused on expanding its size range to include half sizes. It currently offers 78 sizes, in a wide range of skin tones. The company has also grown considerably, and currently has 350 employees. It generates more than $100 million in annual revenues, and is valued at more than $750 million, according to TechCrunch. ThirdLove’s sales are still a fraction of Victoria’s Secret’s, which makes upwards of $7 billion annually. But Victoria’s Secret has been quickly losing popularity with consumers. And ThirdLove’s goal is to scale quickly.
Many direct-to-consumer startups that launched over the last five years have been growing quickly thanks to infusions of cash, and appear to be gunning to overtake the industry giants they were trying to disrupt. So far, Casper has accumulated $239.7 million in funding, and is expanding its retail footprint in order to take on Mattress Firm. Away luggage snagged $81 million, and became profitable in just two years, so it is poised to take on Samsonite and Rimowa.
If these startups scale at their current pace, they may soon be able to displace their bigger competitors.