Monday, May 16, 2011

Style Tread takes $4m investment from Nine Entertainment Co

The Financial Review is reporting this morning that Australian online shoe retailer Style Tread has taken an estimated $4m investment from Nine Entertainment Co for a 20% stake in the business - a $20m valuation for the business.

Style Tread launched late last year and the model is based off Zappo's with free and fast 2 way delivery encouraging you to buy multiple shoes and return those that don't fit. Taking an investment from Nine is a good move for their business I think. There's some competition in this part of the market and as with Zappo's in the US, the winner will do well. A sizeable investment from a large media company is certainly a good way to take the lead.

We're in quite a different space to Style Tread - our product offer is different for obvious reasons, and our focus is more international with 2/3 of our sales coming from overseas, but for Shoes of Prey this sort of investment helps to validate the market that we're operating in. We've bootstrapped Shoes of Prey to date however we regularly speak with both angel investors and VCs and while we haven't taken an investment yet we're certainly open to working with the right parter. Seeing Style Tread move in this direction is both validating and inspiring for us.

Congratulations to Mark Rowland and the Style Tread team!

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