How Skims Took on Victoria’s Secret and Spanx
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Kim Kardashian’s ‘solution wear’ line was recently valued at $3.2 billion. BoF correspondent Alexandra Mondalek charts the rise of the brand, and details what challenges lie ahead.     Background:    Founded in 2019 by Kim Kardashian and retail veteran Jens Grede, ‘solution wear’ line Skims has taken the fashion industry by storm, disrupting the sleepy shapewear category and fetching a $3.2 billion valuation following its Series B funding round in January 2022. Now, the brand is looking to launch new categories and in new geographies, and is eyeing brick-and-mortar and a potential IPO.    “Investors particularly like to talk about founder-product fit, and this really felt like a business that accomplished that,” said BoF’s Alexandra Mondalek.      Key Insights:    Skims has seen non-stop momentum since its launch. Going forward, the brand will have to find a way to keep up with lofty expectations based on its early performance. As Grede told BoF in March, “[Skims] doesn’t have the luxury of failing.” A big challenge Skims has faced is managing unrelenting demand, especially amid the global supply chain crisis. Core items are often out of stock on the brand’s site — a huge problem for getting and keeping customers, and a reason for the business to take on funding, raising a $240 million round in January. A hallmark of Skims’ success has been its marketing approach. From its simple, sexy imagery — a recent campaign featured a number of former Victoria’s Secret models — to the way it has tapped influencers and Kardashian’s powerful network, the brand has focused on brand-building rather than performance marketing.      Additional Resources:       Skims Plots Its Next Moves: ‘We Don’t Have the Luxury of Failing’: Skims recently raised funding at a $3.2 billion valuation. Kim Kardashian and Jens Grede, in an exclusive interview with BoF, explain how the ‘solution wear’ empire plans to prove it’s more than a pandemic fad. First up: swimwear. The BoF Podcast | Jens Grede on Building Skims, Frame and the Future of Fashion: The multitasking entrepreneur joins BoF founder and chief executive Imran Amed to discuss the personal and professional journey that led him to co-create the category-disrupting brand Skims with Kim Kardashian. Building a DTC Challenger Brand | Download the Case Study: Fashion entrepreneurs need a new playbook to launch, scale and differentiate their companies, as regulations and rising costs mean performance marketing can no longer serve the critical role it once did for DTC brands.     Follow The Debrief wherever you listen to podcasts. 
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