Indie body care brand Esker Beauty bootstraps their way to $500,000 in pre-seed funding, according to reporting by Beauty Independent.
WHO: Esker Beauty was launched in 2018 by trend forecaster Shannon Davenport with the help of her husband Greg Foley, an illustrator and designer. Davenport enrolled at the New York Institute of Aromatherapy, receiving a certification in aromatherapy, and became an NAHA Aromatherapy Advocate, which informed the formulations of the body care range. The brand started with three body oils and has since expanded to 30 stockkeeping units priced from $6 to $90.
WHY: Along with fortifying product development and distribution, the pre-seed funding will assist Esker with increasing marketing and content.
IN THEIR OWN WORDS: Kofi Ampadu, general partner at SKU'd Ventures, told Beauty Independent, "I was excited to invest in Esker because of Shannon. She had impressively bootstrapped the brand and built a captive community while aligning with luxury retail partners like Bergdorf Goodman. Based on my research, only a few brands [are] solely focused on body care through the bath. Shannon has the hustle to position Esker as the luxury bath brand."
- Esker Beauty closed a $500,000 pre-seed funding round with participation by Winklevoss Capital, SKU'd Ventures, Beam, and Julie Anne Quay, founder of VFiles.
- The brand was started with $40,000 of the founders’ personal savings.
- The brand is reportedly approaching $1 million in revenue, with 20% to 30% of current sales coming from retail and the balance from direct-to-consumer.
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