THE FIFTH COLLECTION, a luxury vintage fashion re-commerce platform, has raised S$2 million ($1.4million) in seed funding from a group of investors from Asia and Europe, led by Florian Fenner, an emerging markets financier and digital venture capitalist focused on Southeast Asia, its promoters said in an interaction.
Other investors include Chris Evdemon, partner at leading Chinese venture capital firm Sinovation Ventures (formerly known as Innovation Works), and Asian alternative investments pioneer Peter Douglas, as well as other private investors from Asia and Europe.
Founded by husband and wife team Michael Finn and Nejla Matam-Finn in 2014, The Fifth Collection states that its mission is to empower fashion lovers to enjoy greater style at outstanding value in an environmentally impactful way.
It operates as an online marketplace/social luxury platform for luxury vintage fashion in Singapore where sellers can continually and safely upcycle their entire luxury wardrobe, from shoes and bags to clothes and even jewellery, in a discreet and simple manner. It offers a spectrum of over 500 high-end, luxury brands such as Alexander McQueen, Chanel, Hermes and Yves Saint Laurent to name a few.
“Our core value is authenticity, not only with regard to our products, but also in our promise to our customer, our people and every aspect of what we do,” says co-founder and CEO Nejla Matam-Finn. “Customers in this region are among the most sophisticated in the world and they can feel it. This approach takes more time but we have been rewarded with 70 percent repeat customer sales and an average order value of over S$1,000 (US$750).”
The Fifth Collection states that it prides itself in its highly personalized service, strong guarantees on its products and a breakthrough authentication technology that the firm funded and helped develop.
Michael Finn, co-founder and COO, explained that the funds would “augment the current team of ten staffers, invest in operations, marketing and technology to accelerate sales and support our double digit monthly growth,” with the aim of enhancing the customer experience and service offerings of the marketplace.
According to a media release, The Fifth Collection maintains a growing base of collectors who regularly trade through the portal. It offers a value-added concierge service that includes authentication, quality checking, deluxe packaging, pricing recommendation, and returns handling. .
Speaking on the investment, Fenner said: “Asia is both the biggest opportunity and biggest challenge for this fast-growing segment of the sharing economy. This team has a proven track record built on experience, discipline and execution.”