WorldStores raises $15.35M for UK home goods e-commerce

Faith Merino · June 3, 2013 · Short URL:

The UK-based company thrives with next-day and day-of-choice delivery options

When life gets you down, you have to remember the little things that make it all worthwhile. Like free two-day shipping. You might be underwater in your mortgage, funneling all of your money into prescription food for your allergy-prone dog, and facing down an ugly divorce with Tom Cruise, but at least you know that your newly ordered Season One Game of Thrones DVD set will be in your mailbox in exactly two days. Along with that pair of neon green flip-flops you ordered because you need to start getting adventurous and adding more color to your wardrobe.

What’s better than two-day shipping? Next-day shipping. And what’s better than next-day shipping? Day-of-your-choice shipping. WorldStores offers next-day and day-of-choice shipping on some 80% of the goods it sells. WorldStores announced Monday that it has raised £10 million ($15.35 million) in a Series C round of funding led by Serena Capital, with help from existing investors Balderton Capital and Advent Venture Partners.

WorldStores specializes in home goods and boasts some 500,000 product lines ranging from furniture, beds, and barbeques, to bath towels, doormats, and garden supplies. WorldStores’ breadth of selection and shipping options have proven to be a hit with UK customers. In the last 12 months, WorldStores has added 200,000 new customers. The company has seen a 50% increase in sales in the last year and expects to do £75 million in sales in 2013.

A company spokesperson says that in the past, beds have been the most popular category on the site.

Some of the items on the site come with free shipping, such as fitness equipment, garden supplies, and items over £300. Customers can choose standard delivery, next-day delivery, or they can have their items delivered during a specific time window of their choice.

Serena Capital managing partner Marc Fourier says very Britishly:

“We are most impressed with the company’s accomplishments and its ability to become a national UK leader in such a short period of time. We look forward to supporting the management and the company in these exciting times of fast growth. Serena Capital will participate in making WorldStores a unique online retail leader for the home through the depth and quality of its products and through the excellence of its customer experience.”

WorldStores plans to use the new capital from this round to grow its supplier network and expand its product selection. 


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