Digitally native fashion brand catering to the millennial woman brings on strategic partners to harness explosive marketplace demand
Chico, CA – May 16, 2018 – Lulus, a leading, digitally native apparel brand for women, today announced that they have closed a $120 million investment from IVP, a premier later-stage venture capital and growth equity firm, and Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB), a global investment management firm.
Founded in 1996 by Colleen Winter and Debra Cannon, Lulus is a rapidly growing lifestyle, fashion brand. Headquartered in Chico, California, Lulus has emerged as the go-to brand for affordable luxury by offering curated, quality products at reasonable prices, superior customer service, and a personalized online shopping experience. Featuring a unique product assortment from the Lulus label and a curated selection of on-trend designers and brands, the Company utilizes a data driven approach to be able to deliver not only what customers want when they want it, but to be able to leverage scarcity and urgency of sale. Lulus has employed this differentiated merchandising strategy to foster a highly-engaged and loyal millennial customer base.
“My mother and I started Lulus together and are extremely proud of how the company has been able to delight millions of women over the last 20 years,” said Colleen Winter, Co-Founder and CEO of Lulus. “We took our first outside investment from H.I.G. Growth Partners four years ago, and they have been valuable partners as we’ve grown the company significantly. As we look to the next phase of our journey, we are excited to work alongside visionaries like IVP and CPPIB to help strategically guide us through this next wave of growth.”
IVP has a 38-year history of backing innovative consumer companies like Glossier, HomeAway, The Honest Company, MasterClass, Snap, Supercell, and Twitter. As part of the company’s investment, Eric Liaw, General Partner at IVP will join the Lulus Board of Directors.
“What Colleen, Debra, and the Lulus team have been able to accomplish over the years is nothing short of incredible. From humble beginnings in Chico, today they serve customers worldwide,” said Eric Liaw, General Partner at IVP. “We are honored to join them to help expand the company in the years ahead.”
“Lulus’ business is exposed to a number of long-term growth drivers that align with CPPIB’s Thematic Investing strategy. Lulus’ proven track record as a successful retailer targeted to millennial women and as an early participant in the e-commerce space demonstrates their ability to thrive in the rapidly changing retail segment where customers are increasingly shopping online,” said Poul Winslow, Managing Director, Head of Thematic Investing and External Portfolio Management, CPPIB. “We look forward to working with the Lulus team, H.I.G., and IVP to continue building the brand.”
John Kim, a Managing Director with H.I.G., commented, “Since our initial investment in 2014, Lulus has continued to demonstrate spectacular growth, and is now one of the leading digitally native brands in the United States. We are very proud of the Lulus team as they have only begun to scratch the surface of the company’s potential.”
H.I.G. Managing Director Evan Karp added, “Lulus’ mission to offer affordable luxury shopping and unparalleled customer service to millennial women online has created a passionate, rapidly growing, and brand loyal customer base. We are pleased that IVP and CPPIB, each of whom have substantial consumer and technology investment experience, will be joining the Lulus Board of Directors.”
Lulus was founded by the mother/daughter team of Debra Cannon and Colleen Winter in 1996, starting as a vintage boutique in Chico, CA that transitioned purely online in 2008. Passionate and engaged fans covet Lulu’s chic and modern designs. The collection has superior construction, high-end finishes, and special attention paid to quality to make every purchase a true representation of affordable luxury. For more information, please visit www.lulus.com.
Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) is a professional investment management organization that invests the funds not needed by the Canada Pension Plan (CPP) to pay current benefits on behalf of 20 million contributors and beneficiaries. In order to build a diversified portfolio of CPP assets, CPPIB invests in public equities, private equities, real estate, infrastructure and fixed income instruments. Headquartered in Toronto, with offices in Hong Kong, London, Luxembourg, Mumbai, New York City, São Paulo and Sydney, CPPIB is governed and managed independently of the Canada Pension Plan and at arm’s length from governments. At December 31, 2017, the CPP Fund totalled C$337.1 billion. For more information about CPPIB, please visit www.cppib.com or follow us on LinkedIn, Facebook or Twitter.
With $7 billion of committed capital, IVP is one of the premier later-stage venture capital and growth equity firms in the United States. Founded in 1980, IVP has invested in over 300 companies, 107 of which have gone public. IVP is one of the top-performing firms in the industry and has a 37-year IRR of 43.1%. IVP specializes in venture growth investments, industry rollups, founder liquidity transactions, and select public market investments. IVP investments include such notable companies as AppDynamics (CSCO), Buddy Media (CRM), Casper, Coinbase, Compass, Datalogix (ORCL), Domo, Dropbox (DBX), Dropcam (GOOG), Fleetmatics (FLTX), GitHub, Glossier, HomeAway (AWAY), The Honest Company, Kayak (PCLN), Klarna, LegalZoom, LifeLock (LOCK), Marketo (MKTO), Mindbody (MB), MuleSoft (MULE), Netflix (NFLX), Omniture (ADBE), Pure Storage (PSTG), Rubrik, Slack, Snap (SNAP), SoFi, Supercell (SoftBank), Tanium, TransferWise, Twitter (TWTR), Yext (YEXT), ZenDesk (ZEN), ZipRecruiter, and Zynga (ZNGA). For more information, visit www.ivp.com or follow IVP on Twitter: @ivp.
About H.I.G. Growth Partners
H.I.G. Growth Partners is the dedicated growth capital investment affiliate of H.I.G. Capital, a leading global private equity investment firm with $25 billion of equity capital under management. We seek to make both majority and minority investments in strong, growth oriented businesses located throughout North America, South America and Europe. We will invest $5 million to $30 million in equity in a given company and target investments in profitable growth oriented businesses with between $10 million and $100 million in revenues. We consider investments across all industries, but focus on certain high-growth sectors where H.I.G. has extensive in-house expertise such as technology, healthcare, internet and media, consumer products and technology-enabled financial and business services. Growth Partners strives to work closely with our management teams to serve as an experienced resource, providing broad-based strategic, operational, recruiting, and financial management services from a vast in-house team and a substantial network of third-party relationships. For more information, please refer to the H.I.G. website at www.HIGgrowth.com.