MOSCOW--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Sapato.ru, Russia-based leading online shoe retailer, announced today that it has raised $12 mln. Intel Capital, Intel's global investment organization, led investment round with participation of existing investors – Direct Group, eVenture Capital Partners and Kinnevik. This brings total funding of Sapato.ru since inception to $20 mln.
The investments will be used for expanding the assortment range and for strengthening the CRM platform that will help to improve customer service. Part of investment raised is planned to be spent on marketing: brand awareness increase as well as positive image creation.
Sapato.ru is the first startup of Fast Lane Ventures, a Russian company set up by Western investors to launch, accelerate and promote innovative internet projects. Sapato.ru was launched in June 2010; and by May 2011 its turnover grew 50 times to reach more than $2.8 mln. More than 75 000 orders were sent. Currently the e-shop has more than 5700 models (shoes and accessories) from 200+ well-known brands for women, men and children. Number of active customers has reached more than 100 000.
Matthieu Lannegrand, CEO of Sapato.ru, said: “Russian e-commerce shoe market is very young but very promising. Most people today do not feel like wasting time on long rambling through the shops. And e-shops save time and give huge choice and it is especially vital for regions that usually lack good assortment. Sapato.ru is ready to offer everybody all over Russia vast collection of high-quality shoes”.
According to Marina Treshchova, CEO of Fast Lane Ventures, “In web business, time is of the essence. We can launch one new venture a month. But it is not a final target. We strive for more: to make the leading players in their segments and know how to reach this purpose. With such partners as Intel Capital we can do it much faster”.
“The Russian ecommerce segment is one of the fastest growing in the world and online footwear retailing is a proven business model”, said Marcin Hejka, Intel Capital Managing Director for Eastern Europe, Middle East, Africa and Russia, “Success requires superb execution and we were impressed by what the Sapato.ru team achieved in a very short period of time. We are pleased to join other investors in providing additional resources for Sapato.ru to further scale their business”.
Fast Lane Ventures is a venture company of new-type, set up to develop, launch and promote innovative internet projects with a view to ultimately sell them to strategic investors. Currently, we are the sole Russian venture company that invests own funds into implementation of perspective ideas and organize the whole process of its launching at the same time.