Nordstrom looks to buy men's clothing site Trunk Club

Steven Loeb · July 14, 2014 · Short URL: https://vator.tv/n/3821

Trunk Club sends out clothing to try on in the mail based on customer's needs and taste

As I'm sure I've mentioned before, fashion and I do not  go together. I don't have an eye for it, and I don't know anyone who does. But I'm thinking that maybe I should try out Trunk Club, an online men's clothing service that sends out clothing in the mail and let you return what you don't like. It seems like a pretty good service for someone like me, who honestly does not have much time to go shopping.

It's also looking good to upscale fashion retailer Nordstrom, who is currently in talks to buy Trunk Club, according to a report out from ReCode on Monday. Obviously no details the talks have been revealed as of yet, and neither company would confirm the report.

Sources told ReCode that the talks could also end with a strategic investment from Nordstrom, and that would be in-line with Nordstrom's current strategy. It has invested in a few online clothing companies, including online gift retailer Wantful, and  Bonobos, an e-commerce clothing brand that focuses on men's pants.

In fact, earlier this month Nordstrom participated in a $55 million round for the company. It is likely not a coincidence that Trunk Club CEO Brian Spaly was one of founders of Bonobos.

The Chicago-based Trunk Club hand-selects a trunk of items based on each customer’s needs and tastes. Those items are then shipped out, and the customer keeps what they want and sends the rest right back to us, at no cost to them.

The company's offerings, as ReCode points out, could nicely compliment Nordstrom's existing in-store styling service.

The company has raised over $12 million including an $11 million Series A from U.S. Venture Partners, Greycroft Partners, Apex Venture Partners and Anthos Capital in September 2011. Since then, its run rate revenue has grown 10X while membership has grown to 50,000 from 10,000. Additionally, its team has grown to 300 from 50. 

Nordstrom has, so far, only made one tech acquisition when it bought flash-sale website HauteLook for $270 million in 2011.

The online fashion space

Founded in 2009, Trunk Club has been able to thrive in a space where many other companies have failed.

That includes CakeStyle, which, like Trunk Club, a service that sent users a box of clothing based on a customer’s individual style preferences. It shut down in August 2013. MyShape, a site that attempted to redefine online clothes shopping by focusing on a user’s measurements, style choices, and fit preferences to make clothing recommendations via personalized stores shut down in April 2013. 

Fab, meanwhile, has almost completely given up on its flash-sales model and instead become a custom design furniture company

VatorNews has reached out to both Nordstrom and Trunk Club for confirmation. Neither company was available for comment, but we will update if we learn more. 

(Image source: trunkclub.com)

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Trunk CLub

Startup/Business

Joined Vator on

Trunk Club was started to solve a simple problem – shopping for clothes in stores or online just doesn’t work for most guys. It’s overwhelming, inconvenient, and takes way too much time. With Trunk Club, guys discover awesome clothes that are perfect for them without ever having to go shopping. We combine top brands, expert service, and unparalleled convenience to deliver a highly personalized experience that helps guys look their best and saves them time.

We start by scouring the planet for the very best in men’s apparel, curating an ever-evolving assortment of pieces from our favorite designers. With the best inventory anywhere as our point of departure, an Expert on our team hand-selects a trunk of items based on each customer’s needs and tastes. They keep what they love and send the rest right back to us, at no cost to them.

Our team is based in Chicago, IL and has grown from four to over sixty since starting out in late 2009. We are backed by awesome investors, including US Venture Partners, Greycroft Partners, Anthos Capital, and Apex Ventures.

 

Bonobos

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Bonobos was founded in 2007 by Andy Dunn and Brian Spaly to solve a major problem in men's fashion: Men want better-fitting trousers, but they don't want to hours in retail stores paying huge mark-ups on designer goods. Brian used the world's best fabrics to make pants that fit more flatteringly, and Andy had the idea to make the customer experience top-notch by selling online with ninja customer service. Bonobos now has customers in all 50 states and over 40 countries worldwide

Fab

Startup/Business

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Fab is on a mission to help people better their lives with design.

Fab was founded by serial entrepreneur Jason Goldberg in February 2011 and launched on June 9, 2011. Fab’s founders are Bradford Shellhammer, Nishith Shah and Deepa Shah. Fab’s headquarters are in New York. The company also has offices in Berlin, London and Pune.

Over 6 million people around the world use Fab todiscover everyday design products at great prices, to connect with the world’s most exciting designers, and toshare their favorite design inspirations.