In Brands, Finance

Herbivore, the cult-favorite prestige skincare brand, has taken its first outside investment, receiving a $15MM Series A investment led by Silas Capital with participation from Stage 1 Fund.

WHO: Founded in 2011 by Alex Kummerow and Julia Wills out of their Seattle kitchen after buying a $50 soap-making kit, today Herbivore offers an assortment of non-toxic, therapeutic products crafted with its iconic minimalist aesthetic. A social media darling, its line of 35+ SKUs ranges from skincare to bath & body, formulated with pure, active, highly concentrated vitamins, minerals, and botanicals. The company currently sells through more than 500 doors globally, including prominent retailers such as Nordstrom, Credo, Space NK, Carbon Beauty, Follain, and the industry leader Sephora, where it launched in 2015 and now represents one of the retailer’s fastest growing and most productive skincare brands.

WHY: The investment will be used to hire more management, build out digital marketing efforts, and potentially open a retail store.

IN THEIR OWN WORDS: Kummerow, the company’s Co-CEO, expressed his excitement about the new partnership and the growth prospects for the business. “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.”

“It was our goal to hold on to our baby. We wanted to hold onto it for pretty much as long as we could. We have spent the last few years looking for the right partner because we knew there would come a point where for us to really get to the next level, some outside capital and some industry connections could really be beneficial for us,” Kummerow told WWD.

“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 Co-CEO and Chief Creative Officer Wills.

Brian Thorne, Partner of Silas, stated, “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.”

Jeremy Triefenbach, Partner of Stage 1 Fund, added, “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 Alex and Julia meet the insatiable consumer demand for their products.”

DETAILS: 

  • Herbivore raised a $15MM Series A investment led by Silas Capital with participation from Stage 1 Fund.
  • According to WWD, this is the first outside investment for the brand.
  • Sources noted the brand is on track to do about $50 million in retail sales for 2019.

Photo: via Herbivore 

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