Rothy’s Diversifies from Shoes to Handbags; Colonies Raises to Grow Co-Living Concept


DTC’s Daily Digest brings you the latest news on the world’s fastest growing direct-to-consumer and challenger brands. In today’s edition: Rothy’s diversifies from shoes to handbags; Colonies raises to grow co-living concept; and AnyMind Group partner with LÝFT for DTC offering. 

Rothy’s diversifies from shoes to handbags

Direct-to-consumer shoe business Rothy’s is entering its first new category, as it prepares to launch a handbag collection. 

Like Brooklinen, which recently raised USD$50m, Rothy’s is a rare profitable DTC brand. Last June, it surpassed 1 million unique customers. A second category launch suggests the brand is confident its eco-friendly take on accessories isn’t losing steam. 

The handbag diversification was two years in the making, and are part of a wider push for sustainability from the brand. Yarn used in Rothy’s bags is made with plastic picked up from coastlines and recycled water bottles. Rothy’s also 3D-knits its bags, eliminating fabric waste that comes from traditional handbag manufacturing.  

Rothy’s is also planning to open three brick-and-mortar locations this year, in New York and Los Angeles. “We have essentially designed our machines and our entire manufacturing process around using post-consumer waste,” said Roth Martin, the company’s founder.

Colonies raises to grow co-living concept

French startup Colonies has raised a USD$34m (€30m) funding round . Idinvest Partners, Global Founders Capital and La Financière Saint James are participating in today’s funding round.

Colonies targets young people who are looking for an apartment without all the hassle involved in actually looking for an apartment. When you rent a place on Colonies, you get your own room with a private bathroom. You then share your living room and kitchen with 8 to 12 persons.

Some buildings have additional perks, such as a rooftop or outdoor area, a gym, a spa, etc. “Our thing works a bit like a service,” co-founder Alexandre Martin told me. “Everything that is shared is managed by us.”

For instance, Colonies makes sure that kitchens remain clean and that you don’t have to worry about all the basics, from sponges to dishwashing tablets. You just pay a fixed monthly fee and you get your room, those basic supplies and cleaning services as well as utilities.

AnyMind Group partner with LÝFT for DTC offering

Singapore-based software company AnyMind Group has partnered with fitness apparel brand LÝFT to start a direct-to-consumer offering

Both parties aim to kickstart a DTC offering for social media influencers and content creators to produce and sell their own branded merchandise. Kosuke Sogo, CEO and co-founder of AnyMind Group said through this collaboration with LÝFT, the company has an opportunity to match its vast influencer network with a DTC offering.

This comes in line with the company bagging USD$26.4m in new capital from Japan Post Capital, along with existing investors including Mirai Creation Fund. This brings the total raised capital to USD$62.3m.

With this new capital, AnyMind Group aims to look into growing the DTC offering, move into new markets including India and the Middle East, and expand the company’s offerings in digital-out-of-home advertising.

Earlier this year, AnyMind Group acquired Japanese influencer network, Grove, owned by Space Shower Network. As part of the agreement, AnyMind Group will acquire 51% ownership of the network, and sees 150 exclusive creators and 750 registered creators join AnyMind Group’s influencer marketing platform.

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