Second-hand fashion shopping app ‘Charan’ raises 4.1 billion won in seed fundingReading Time: 2 minutes
MINEIS, a South Korean startup that operates second-hand fashion shopping service Charan, announced on Feb. 23 that it has raised a seed investment of 4.15 billion won ($4.1 million).
The investment was led by Goodwater Capital, CJ Logistics, SM Culture Partners, T Investment, Schmidt, and SparkLabs, with angel investors including Kim Chang-han, CEO of Krafton, Lee Seung-yoon, former CEO of Radish, and Kim Chang-won, former CEO of Pet Friends. The investment came 10 months after the company started its business in April. MineIS is recognized for quickly verifying the market potential of Charan’s alpha service test last year and building its own operating system, and has been recognized for successfully attracting investment from the seed stage.
Charan is a service that sells consigned used clothing through a merchandising process that includes self-collection, professional studio photography, antibacterial and antiseptic cleaning, and appropriate price suggestions. Unsold items can be donated upon request. In addition, it provides key information such as authenticity, product grade, and actual size confirmed through a systematic inspection system so that consumers who purchase used clothing can purchase products with peace of mind. Packaging and refunds are also available.
Unlike second-hand resale platforms that focus on specific categories and luxury brands, Charan is characterized by a wide range of products, from SPA brands to premium brands, aimed at a more diverse customer base. Through its alpha service last year, the company secured about 3,900 brands in various fashion categories, confirming the potential of popularizing second-hand fashion shopping.
CEO Kim Hye-sung founded the ad-tech startup ‘Freenters’ in 2012 while studying economics at the University of Chicago, and later served as a reviewer for domestic VC investments before serially founding MineEase in 2022. Currently, Mineis is composed of team members with IT and commerce backgrounds from Amazon, Microsoft, Naver, Samsung Electronics, and Willa. The company launched its Charan beta service in February and plans to launch its full service in the first half of the year.
“We noted that MineEase provides a convenient consignment sales experience and a reliable product purchase experience in the second-hand clothing market, which is expected to grow at a high rate,” said Jin-hyuk Jung, Team Leader at TInvestment. “The execution of successful tests with a thorough market validation plan in a short period of time was also a trigger for our investment.” “We expect MineEase to grow as a unique player in a situation where there are no obvious competing services.
“The investment will be used to expand our sophisticated and fast inspection system and secure distribution lines,” said Kim Hye-sung, CEO of Mineis. “Through service enhancements, we will provide customers with a more convenient and reliable buying and selling experience, leading the way in popularizing used clothing shopping.”
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