Clicks-and-bricks fine jewelry brand AUrate announced today that it’s closed $13 million in Series A funding—the largest Series A round ever secured by a fine jewelry brand.
The New York City–based company, which was founded by Sophie Kahn and Bouchra Ezzahraoui as a direct-to-consumer brand in 2015, raised the $13 million series, led by Michael Platt’s BlueCrest Capital, “with plans to expand their fast growing online and offline operations and direct investment in technology,” according to a company statement. Additional participants in the round included Point King Capital, Arab Angel Fund, and Drake Management.
In 2017, the company raised $2.6 million in seed funding from Arab Angel Fund, Victress Capital, and a handful of anonymous angel investors. (JCK named Kahn and Ezzahraoui its Innovative Retailer in its February 2016 issue.)
The 2017 cash infusion led to AUrate’s online revenues growing by a consistent 400% year over year, and sales in its brick-and-mortar stores roughly doubled in 2018, according to the company.
This new round of funding will be used to enhance profitability through growing all channels of the business and to “double down on what’s been working,” reads the same statement.
The brand will double its data science team with the goal of bettering its user experiences online and expand its brick-and-mortar footprint with the addition of more physical AUrate boutiques. The brand currently has stores in Brooklyn, N.Y., and Washington, D.C.
There will also be continued focus on Curate by AUrate, the styling box program the brand debuted last year that lets customers order pieces for at-home try-on.
With its relatively affordable and generally minimalist-feeling real-gold and vermeil offerings, the brand has cultivated a following of self-purchasing consumers. AUrate’s customers are 90% women, and more than 40% become repeat customers, according to statistics provided by the company.
The young company, which launched in 2015 with the goal of “democratizing gold,” has been fielding offers from investors since its debut, Ezzahraoui told JCK last year.
Top: AUrate founders Bouchra Ezzahraoui and Sophie Kahn (photo courtesy of Aurate)