- FashionUnited |
Natalie Massenet, the founder of Net-A-Porter and co-chairman of Farfetch, has returned to e-commerce as co-founder of a venture capital firm that will make investments in retail and technology start-ups.
Imaginary Ventures has closed on its first 75 million dollars (52 milion pounds GB) which it plans to funnel into fashion, lifestyle and beauty sectors with strong backgrounds of investments like Glossier, who sells new easy-to-use beauty and skincare products, online clothing retailer, Everlane, and online fashion retail platform, Farfetch.
Ms. Massenet has teamed up with Nick Brown, a former investor in a New York-based capital fund to form Imaginary Ventures. The two aim to “maximise the growth of early stage companies that are capitalising on this rapidly changing environment, and that focus their strategy around an understanding of consumers’ evolving needs”.
The firm will go up against firms like Forerunner and Benchmark as their competition as they look for the best destination for their investments, according to the New York Times. Imaginary Venture will rely on Natalie Massenet’s experience and contacts from Net-A-Porter to add credibility to it’s new reputation.
After stepping down as Executive Chairwoman of Net-A-Porter in 2015, Ms. Massenet intended to retire. “I didn’t have a specific plan other than to take a break,” she commented. “But while talking to various entrepreneurs, I found that this was something I enjoyed.”
Imaginary Venture’s limited partners, Tom and Ruth Chapman, co-founders of Matchesfashion have faith in Massenet and Brown as they move forward. Tom comments to Drapers, “Natalie has disrupted and inspired an industry through innovation and Nick has built a formidable reputation as an intuitive early stage investor. Ruth and I share many of their core values in building a consumer commerce business from the customer up, something that is vital in this competitive environment.”