Last month, Dragons’ Den judge, Kelly Hoppen, and her board, took to equity crowdfunding platform Crowdcube to raise £1.1 million for her self-titled online affordable luxury homewares business, Kelly Hoppen London.
From launch in January 2014 to February 2015, the Kelly Hoppen London attracted circa 1 million visits which led to over 5,000 customers purchasing Kelly Hoppen London products (with 30% of those customers purchasing on more than one occasion). 30% of site visits were from overseas (with no overseas marketing). 97% of customers were satisfied with the products and service according to the company’s Feefo feedback. 35,000 people have signed up to email marketing. Sales for Q1 2015 were over £500,000 compared to £125,000 in Q1 2014.
The business has so far created 27 jobs and expects this to rise to 45 within the next three years. In October 2014, Kelly Hoppen London launched its first trial pop-up stores in mid-mall locations in Bluewater and Westfield London.
Hoppen offered 11% of the company’s equity to support its initial growth plan and investors were also to benefit from a 10% discount off Kelly Hoppen London products for an investment of £1,000 or more.
Unfortunately, due to lack of funds/interest, Hoppen and her team were forced to pull the plug on the initiative.
Luke Lang, founder of Crowdcube, reportedly told Business Insider:
“It’s quite common. As much as we like to think we fund every business, we don’t. Only around 50% of businesses that go live on the site reach their funding target. That number’s been steadily increasing over the years. We were all expecting a lot more from Kelly Hoppen’s pitch but such is life. Things don’t always go the way you’d hoped.”
In an email to the media outlet, Hoppen added:
“The crowdfunding process has resulted in a number of fascinating discussions we could not have anticipated prior to embarking on this journey; we have taken the decision that alternative methods of funding our future growth plans in the UK and internationally are more attractive to the business – this is a purely commercial decision.
“We are very grateful for the support shown by the many people who have pledged investment, both large and small. As a token of our appreciation, we will be sending a voucher giving a discount off purchases they make on Kellyhoppen.com.”
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