NTWRK, a video shopping app that has helped popularize the idea of live-streamed trading in the United States, announced today that it has closed with $ 50 million in new funds led by Goldman Sachs Asset Management and global luxury group Kering. , owners of luxury brands Gucci, Yves Saint Laurent, Bottega Veneta and others. The company has been working to capitalize on the growing interest in live commerce and content from creators, and switched to live virtual events and festivals as COVID-19 devastated the United States last year. Now he says he will invest in promoting their growth and working to establish a more global footprint.
Other participants in the new round include LionTree Partners and Tenere Capital. They join the company’s previous sponsors: Main Street Advisors (whose investors include Jimmy Iovine, Drake, and LeBron James), Live Nation, Foot Locker, and others. Allison Berardo, Vice President of the Growth Equity business at Goldman Sachs Asset Management, will join NTWRK’s board of directors.
Aimed at a younger audience of Gen Z consumers and millennials, NTWRK offers tools that allow creators to interact with viewers and sell products in real time, in what has been called a mix of QVC, Twitter, and Twitch. The experience combines commerce with entertainment, as viewers watch and chat with other viewers and hosts in real time, while shopping for streetwear, shoes, collectibles, and other items. The company has also created its own exclusive content where it has featured hosts such as Billie Eilish, Juice WRLD, DJ Khaled, Odell Beckham Jr., Eddie Huang, Blake Griffin, Alexander Wang, FaZe Clan, Nadeshot, Jonah Hill, Gary Vee, A $ AP Ferg, Wu-Tang Clan, Doja Cat and others. (He even invested in FaZe Clan last year, we should keep in mind).
Its business model extends beyond just offering live video purchases that you can tune in at any time, as it also regularly features product drops that work to build anticipation and excitement. This type of feature is only now making its way to larger social media platforms, like Instagram, which introduced drops this spring.
NTWRK has also embraced live events and virtual festivals as another way to engage the public. Last year, for example, ran TRANSFER, which featured 30 brands and artists, panels, interviews, DJ SETS, and musical performances. BEYOND THE STREETS, a virtual art fair that attracted more than 250,000 attendees, was also held. Earlier this year, he held a two-day festival of design and collectibles games, Unboxed, as the first in a list of digital events that have subsequently run throughout the year, including The Surface Festival, a virtual food festival. and a virtual festival of household items. Now it is preparing for the return of its flagship event, TRANSFER.
This summer, NTWRK also embraced the world of digital products with the launch of NTWRK NFT, its own curated store for unique crypto art from creators like BADBOI, Imaginary Foundation, MILKMAN, Young & Sick, Fafi, KidEight, MGOGLKTKO, and Eddie Gangland.
Live shopping is already a popular activity abroad, but it is still gaining traction here in the United States. The company, announcing its news today, noted that live streaming purchases in China reached $ 150 billion in 2020 and are expected to grow to $ 300 billion this year. But in the United States, it is expected to reach $ 11 billion by the end of 2021 and $ 25 billion by 2025, leaving plenty of room for growth.
“Our vision is to become the largest and most culturally relevant live shopping marketplace for Gen Z and Millennial audiences who are obsessed with pop culture,” NTWRK CEO Aaron Levant said in a statement. . “It is exciting for NTWRK that Goldman Sachs and Kering are signing on for the future of live streaming purchases.”