April 8, 2014, 11:43 AM

French flash-sale retailer Vente-Privee reaches 1 million U.S. subscribers

Vente-Privee USA also posted 2013 sales of $50 million, double its 2012 revenue, but still a small fraction of its 1.6 billion euros (US$2.2 billion) in global revenue last year.  

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Vente-Privee grew its U.S. subscriber base to 1 million in 2013 and doubled U.S. revenue to $50 million, the French flash-sale retailer announced today. While a significant gain in the United States, that’s still a small fraction—2.3%—of the 1.6 billion euros (US$2.2 billion) in global revenue the retailer reported in 2013

Vente-Privee began selling in the United States in 2011. Within the past year, three executives have left the company. Katherine Wu Brady, a former CEO and chief operating officer for Vente-Privee USA, in March left for XO Group Inc., the owner of wedding retail and information sites TheKnot.com and WeddingChannel.com. Last year, XO group hired away another Vente-Privee CEO, Michael Steib, and Rue La La hired chief marketing officer Robin Domeniconi.

Today the company also announced it has a new investor: Qatar Holding, the direct investment arm of the government-backed Qatar Investment Authority. Qatar Holding becomes a a significant minority shareholder, joining the company’s founding partners and U.S. private equity firm Summit Partners, which first invested in the company in 2007. Jacques-Antoine Granjon, CEO and founder of Vente-Privee.com and the majority shareholder, says the new investment will bolster the retailer’s position as a leader in European flash-sale retailing.

Vente-Privee, No. 11 in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Europe, surpassed 20 million subscribers across eight European countries in 2013. In 2013, its global sales grew 23% to 1.6 billion euros (US $2.2 billion) from 1.3 billion euros (US $1.79 billion) in 2012. Mobile devices accounted for 35% of its sales. The company also reported a 65% increase in sales events, to 10,100 in 2013 from just over 6,000 in 2012. The retailer offered 800 sales in the U.S. in 2013.

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