March 23, 2011, 2:11 PM

Private sale e-retailer Gilt Groupe buys a high-end home furnishings site enables designers and other shoppers to find upscale home products.

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Private sale e-retailer Gilt Groupe today took a step closer to expanding its home furnishings business with the purchase of Decorati. The company runs a web site designed to connect  shoppers with interior designers and upscale home furnishings. Gilt did not say how much it paid for the company, founded in 2007.

Visitors to can browse home furnishing products that typically are seen in print catalogs or manufacturer or brand showrooms. Shoppers can submit online quote requests for the products on the site and buy sample products. Visitors also can learn more about designers, seek advice from them and research products from some 650 manufacturers.  

"The design community will be a key component of our expanded home business," says Kevin Ryan, founder and CEO, Gilt Groupe. "Decorati has done a fantastic job establishing a venue for high-end designers, knowledgeable consumers and trade-only brands.  We are excited to combine those assets as we expand Gilt's home business."

Gilt’s home offerings now include a hand-picked selection of products and services at discount prices, and about 30 sales per week. Later this year, Gilt expects to expand its home line to include full-price merchandise, antiques, daily flash sales, community and social tools, and features specifically designed for professional designers.

Gilt is No. 140 in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide. According to an Internet Retailer estimate, the flash-sale retailer’s web sales totaled $425 million in 2010, up 150% from $170 million in 2009.

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