Vinted

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Vinted - Company Profile

Headquartered in Vilnius, Lithuania, Vinted is a marketplace that allows people to sell and buy second-hand fashion. The company's c-suite executives include Milda Mitkute, Thomas Plantenga, Mantas Mikuckas, and Justas Janauskas. It was established in 2008 and now caters to over 20 million users in 12 countries.

Key Leaders

  • Vinted was founded in 2008 by Milda Mitkute and Justas Janauskas.
  • Milda Mitkute also serves as the Head of Performance Marketing at the company. Prior to that, she was the Head of Social Media at Vinted. She has a bachelor's degree in Culture Management from Vilnius University and a master's degree in Cultural Management from both Vilnius Academy of Arts and ISM University of Management and Economics.
  • Justas Janauskas co-founded Qoorio and Vieta as well. He has a bachelor's degree in Computer Sciences from Vilnius University and a master's degree in the same field from Vilnius University.
  • Thomas Plantenga is the CEO of Vinted. He started as a strategy consultant for the company in 2016. Two months after, he was promoted and served as a chief strategy officer, after which he worked his way up and became the CEO.
  • Mantas Mikuckas is the COO of Vinted. He is one of the founders of the company. He also founded Interdata and Practica Capital. He currently serves as an angel investor & advisor to TRAFI.

Value Proposition, Product Offerings & Competitive Advantage

  • Vinted operates in several countries, including the US, Spain, the UK, Belgium, France, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, Austria, Poland, Lithuania, and Czech Republic.
  • The fact that Vinted is a free marketplace that does not take any portion or cut of sales made by sellers sets it apart from competitors like Etsy.
  • Vinted allows people to list items they are interested in selling on the platform for free. Interested buyers can purchase these items after paying via PayPal, Vinted Balance, or bank card. These buyers receive their items in less than a week after paying for shipping.
  • Vinted now has 180 million products on its platform and has reached a valuation of $1 billion. This makes it a leader in the industry it operates in.

Growth & Market Expansion

  • Vinted was founded as a website in 2008 in Lithuania. A year after, it launched in Germany and grew beyond expectations.
  • By 2013, it kicked off a Series A funding round, where it raised 6 million euros. In 2014, it raised another 24.8 million euros in a Series B funding round led by Accel Partners and Insights Venture Partners.
  • In 2016, the company was bent on being profitable. They were advised by Thomas Plantenga (then a strategy consultant, now its CEO) to move from mandatory sales fees into offering a free product with additional paid services like closet promotion as an option.
  • This business model change increased its monthly sales by 230%. Vinted reported that it processed $360 million in sales in 2017. Its revenue reached almost $14 million in the same year.
  • The company now operates in 12 markets including the US and the UK. It has 25 million users and employs 300 people.
  • Vinted's future plans include getting more male shoppers on its platform, as it is currently mainly focused on female fashion.

Consumer Perception

  • There are mixed perceptions of Vinted. On Influenstar, it has a 4 out of 5 rating. There are several complaints about buyers being sold fake items on the marketplace. Users also claim that there are scammers on the platform.
  • Positive perceptions about the platform include the easy to use interface and making more money than expected from sales.
  • Vinted is rated 2 out of 5 on Trustpilot and 1.6 out of 5 of SiteJabber. There are several complaints about scammers and buyers getting away with anything.
  • There are also a lot of complaints about the poor customer service on Vinted. As one user described, "Vinted is a haven for SCAMMERS & FRAUD [and] customer service is awful."
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Justas Janauskas

Justas Janauskas co-founded Vinted in 2008 and is also a board member at the company, as well as the CEO of Qoorio. Janauskas received a bachelor of computer science degree and a master of computer science degree from Vilnius University. He is active on LinkedIn and Facebook, where he has 435 followers.

Professional Experience

  • Janauskas is the co-founder and a board member of Vinted, a community marketplace that helps members buy and sell pre-loved fashion from each other. He co-founded the company in 2008. He is also the co-founder, and has been the CEO of Qoorio since October 2018. In addition, Janauskas serves as an advisor at Veleza.
  • Before this, Janauskas was a professor's assistant at Vilnius University from September 2007 to February 2012. He was also the product development lead at ERP, UAB, from January 2009 to February 2011, and the chief ERP software architect at Alna Business Solutions from October 2006 to December 2008.
  • Janauskas also worked as a software developer at Vilnius from June 2002 to October 2006 and as a software engineer at Edrana Baltic from 1998 to 2002. He speaks English and Russian.

Educational Background

Social Media Profiles

  • Janauskas is active on LinkedIn with 500+ connections.
  • He also has 435 followers on his Facebook page.
  • Janauskas does not seem to be active on Twitter as his profile has zero tweets and six people following him, even though he joined the platform in April 2012.

Business Information

  • Janauskas is an investor.
  • In February 2016, he invested €270k in Wowtto's Angel Round.



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Milda Mitkute

Milda Mitkute is the co-founder of Vinted, an online marketplace for second-hand clothing. She has a bachelor's degree and two master’s degrees and often gives interviews and talks about Vinted, women in business and the startup environment. Additional details about Milda are outlined below.

Education

  • Milda Mitkute earned a bachelor's degree in culture management from Vilnaius University in 2008.
  • She earned a master's degree in cultural management from Vilnius University in 2010.
  • Finally, she earned a master's degree in marketing strategy and management from ISM University of Management and Economics in 2014.

Professional Experience

Business Information

  • Milda co-founded Vinted, an online marketplace for second-had clothing, in 2008.
  • By 2018, the company had 4 million active users in nine countries.
  • The company does not charge buyers or sellers and does not take a cut of the profits sellers make.
  • Vinted has raised $260.3 million in five rounds of funding.

Other Activities

  • Milda often gives interviews and talks regarding Vinted and startups. In April 2019, she was interviewed by Startup Day about Vinted.
  • Her interviews and talks often focus on women entrepreneurs, women in business or women in technology, such as this interview on the Women in Tech Podcast.
  • Milda was a speaker at TechChill 2019, a conference focused on the startup environment in the Baltics.

Social Media

  • Milda's LinkedIn Profile can be found here.
  • She has a Facebook profile, which can be found here. She does not post much publicly and the number of followers she has on this platform is not visible to the public.
  • Milda has an Instagram profile which has 277 followers, but is private so posts cannot be viewed publicly.
  • Milda does not have a Twitter profile.


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Vinted - Competitors

Three true competitors of Vinted, based on their service, market, and scale, are ThredUP, PoshMark, and Depop.

ThredUP

  • ThredUP is an online used clothing retailer that re-sells items from users on consignment.
  • ThredUp is active in the US and Canada. However, they are planning to expand to other countries soon.
  • The company has an estimated revenue of $37.9 million.
  • The company was chosen as a true competitor to Vinted based on the fact that they are one of the leaders in the online resale apparel market. While Vinted and ThredUp do not currently overlap too much in their market, if Vinted wants to expand their activity in the US market they will have to contend with ThredUp.

Poshmark

  • Poshmark calls themselves the "largest social marketplace for fashion". They allow users to sell directly to one another.
  • Poshmark is currently active in the US and Canada.
  • Poshmark currently has five million sellers and has sold over $1 billion worth of clothing.
  • Poshmark is a true competitor to Vinted since they have almost identical services, especially since both focus on being an online fashion community, not just a marketplace.

Depop

  • Depop is an app-based online marketplace for users to sell clothes directly to one another. It focuses on vintage and second-hand garments. Depop also focuses on the community aspect, with many successful sellers on Depop becoming successful influencers or YouTube stars.
  • The company is active in Europe and, more recently, the US.
  • Depop sold over $460 million worth of clothes in 2018, with 9 million users.
  • It is a direct competitor to Vinted as they both are active in Europe with newer expansions in the US, and both focus on the same service, especially with vintage apparel.

Research Strategy

To identify competitors, the research team defined competitors as those businesses that are in the same market offering essentially the same product/service.

First, we began by identifying the product and market of Vinted. Vinted works across Europe and in the US as a platform for people to sell their used clothing. In 2019, Vinted is expected to see around €1.3 billion in clothes and has 25 million registered users.

Then, we identified companies mentioned by experts as competitors of Vinted. From there, we researched each company to ensure that they were offering a similar service, in the same market, at a similar scale to Vinted.

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Vinted - Competitive Landscape 1

Three of Vinted's true competitors are thredUP, a secondhand clothing marketplace, Poshmark, a user-managed secondhand clothing marketplace, and Depop, a mobile app that allows people to buy and sell popular items from influencers. Below you will find an overview on each company.

thredUP

Poshmark

  • Poshmark was founded on February 1, 2011.
  • The company headquarters is located in Redwood City, California.
  • Poshmark is an online marketplace where customers can buy and sell used clothing. Users manage their own listings and sales and ship directly to their buyers.
  • The company claims to have over 5,000 brands for sale by its users and have had 25 million items uploaded by its sellers via the mobile app.
  • One of their value propositions is that offer "Posh Parties", which are online shopping parties where people can invite their friends and family to buy and sell in their event.
  • They also offer an online social community through their website.
  • Poshmark's executive suite includes CEO Manish Chandra, Senior VP Tracy Sun, CTO Gautam Golwala, and Senior VP Chetan Pungaliya.
  • The company has only 1.5 stars on TrustPilot, with 81% of reviews being negative. Most of the negative reviews involve poor customer service experiences from both buyers and sellers.
  • The company has two stars on SiteJabber, with 1,053 one star reviews. Negative reviews on this site also regarded customer service, mostly from buyers that were not satisfied with the way customer service employees dealt with questions and issues with items that were purchased on the marketplace.

Depop

  • Depop was founded on November 1, 2011.
  • The company headquarters is located in London, England.
  • Depop is a "creative marketplace" that allows people to sell their both handmade creations such as clothing, jewelry, and art, as well as "inspired" pieces such as clothing styles worn by influencers.
  • Their value proposition is providing a place where people can see what their friends and favorite social media influencers are buying and wearing and then purchase the same or similar items easily right on the app.
  • Depop focuses on inspiration, saying their goal is to have consumers be inspired by influencers, and influencers in-turn be inspired by what consumers are buying.
  • The company claims to have over 10 million sellers on their platform.
  • Both selling and buying takes place on the Depop mobile app.
  • Depop's executive team includes CEO Maria Raga, Finance Director Zoe Wong, and VP Commercial Rachel Swidenbank.
  • The company has 3.5 stars on TrustPilot with an even split between negative ratings (37%) and positive ratings (36%). Positive reviews tout the ease of selling and buying on the app, and negative reviews tend to mention "scammers" or people selling poor quality items.
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Vinted - Competitive Landscape 2

ThredUp, Poshmark, and Depop offer different advantages and approaches in the secondhand fashion marketplace but all leverage the ability to shop from anywhere. While ThredUp processes and sells the items themselves, Poshmark and Depop rely more on an eBay model of direct seller to buyer interaction. Depop specializes even further in the social media and clout building aspects of buying and selling.

ThreadUp

Competitive Advantage

  • Clean Out Kit brings millions of people into the resale marketplace by allowing them to easily ship their clothes to the company for resale.
  • ThredUp uses complicated algorithms that automatically value the items for resale to streamline the pricing process.
  • ThredUp can process up to 100,000 items a day.
  • ThredUp allows customers to shop from anywhere through their website and mobile apps.

Product Offerings

  • ThredUp sells secondhand clothes, shoes, handbags, and accessories to consumers as well as gift cards.
  • Over 2 million kids' and women's clothing are available for sale on the ThredUp website.
  • Customers can get their own "Clean Out Kit" which allows them to resell their clothing for money, shopping credit, or small donation to a charity of the customer's choice.
  • Goody Boxes and Rescue Boxes offer customers the option to receive randomly selected items, keep what they want and return the items they don't.

Growth/Market Expansions

  • Retailers (such as Macy's or JCPenny) can now work with ThredUp to encourage customer loyalty to their brands while still participating in the fashion resale business.
  • In an effort to fund the retail partnering initiative ThredUp raised $100 million.

Revenue

Market Valuation

Consumer Perception

  • ThredUp has a Better Business Bureau (BBB) rating of A.
  • The main complaints touch on refunds and payout amounts.
  • The top negative reviews were from customers looking for a return on the clothing they sent in for resale.
  • The top positive reviews cite the condition, price, and quality of items.


Poshmark

Competitive Advantage

  • Less overhead as the company doesn't handle merchandise, instead it facilitates purchasing between individuals.
  • The company is a social media network where people sell each other fashion and socialize based on personal taste.
  • Poshmark leaves pricing to the sellers rather than using their own system of valuing items for resale.
  • Poshmark has over 10 million members and four million seller stylists, having shown a ten-fold growth in the last five years due to its positive social interactions with its growing customer base.
  • The company has implemented a personalized system that is similar to the "personal connection that existed ten years ago between a boutique stylist and shoppers".
  • Its introduction of PoshPost, the first mailing service specifically designed for fashion, is also a big advantage, as it allows members to ship anywhere within the US for under $5.

Product Offerings

  • Poshmark provides a platform for sellers and buyers to interface directly through selling and buying clothing, bags, shoes, accessories, and home goods such as bedding and office supplies.
  • Categories of items available to be bought and sold include women's fashion, men's fashion, kid's fashion, and home goods.
  • The website also allows the shopper to filter by brand or join in on a Poshmark Party where users can share and shop by theme.

Growth/Market Expansions

  • Poshmark is reportedly preparing to go public, although the IPO has been delayed.
  • The company is also planning to go international, dipping first into the Canadian market.
  • The company also hopes to offer more in terms of menswear, plus sizes, and children's clothing.

Revenue

  • As of December 2018, Poshmark's revenue was expected to reach $140 million.

Market Valuation

Consumer Perception

  • Poshmark has a BBB rating of B+.
  • The top complaints touch on issues with returns and refunds.
  • Top negative reviews concern issues with misrepresented quality and receiving refunds based on those misrepresented characteristics.
  • Top positive reviews include good experiences with shipping, variety of items available, and site navigation.

Depop

Competitive Advantage

Product Offerings

  • Items listed for sale include vintage clothing, shoes, accessories, wigs and more.
  • The app offers commenting and messaging in addition to the ability to buy and sell.
  • Categories such as "made for you," "meet sellers," and "things we love" help the shoppers to find clothing items they would most likely want to purchase.

Growth/Market Expansions

  • Depop has been successful in securing funding to improve their algorithms and image detection.
  • The company is also looking to expand further into the U.S. market.
  • Growth in terms of revenue continues to grow year-on-year by 100%.

Revenue

  • As of April 2018, Depop was on track to sell around $460 million in clothing.

Market Valuation

  • Depop did not disclose their market valuation, however CEO Maria Raga said she was "extremely happy" when questioned on the matter.

Consumer Perception


Research Strategy

We searched business publications such as Forbes, Inc., and Bloomberg for data regarding Depop's market valuation but the information could not be found. Then, we looked into databases such as Crunchbase and Craft.co to see if we could find credible market valuation information. In addition, we scoured interviews with the Maria Raga, CEO of Depop for any hints or clues that would allow us to triangulate the market valuation but no such information was found. Depop is a private company, thus it is not required to disclose its market valuation which is the most likely reason why this information is not available.
Sources
Sources

From Part 06