Etsy buys second-hand clothes app Depop for £1.2bn

A half-Italian entrepreneur, his glamorous wife and Spanish business partner will be popping champagne with their high society friends today after their company Depop was bought out by US giant Etsy for £1.2billion.

The online marketplace last night announced it was buying the London-based site which was founded by Anglo-Italian Simon Beckerman in 2011 and has been run by Spanish businesswoman Maria Raga since 2016. 

Beckerman is set to make a multi-million pound windfall from the sale, which is reported to be up to £45million. Raga – whose ‘fighter attitude’ also helped secure the deal – will also be toasting their success.

He previously said he would ‘love to sell the company for £1billion’. Now he will be able to celebrate reaching his goal with his glamorous wife of 10 years, Chiara Ugo Baudino, who will be joining in the celebrations alongside the trio’s high society friends. 

The three have rubbed shoulders with celebrities including fashion designer Tommy Hilfiger, Italian designer Maria Grazia Chiuri, the creative director at Dior, and Chiara Ferragni, an Italian entrepreneur, fashion blogger, influencer and designer. 

They keep their social media followers updated with behind-the-scenes action from Depop as well as their luxury holidays and parties with the fashion elite. 

Depop’s sale marks a remarkable chapter in the Depop founder’s story. His journey to success began in the 1990s when he launched a magazine called People In Groove (PIG), and continued into the noughties when he founded a glasses brand with his brother in 2006.   

At least seven and a half hours of sleep a night is key ingredient to his business acumen, as was a voracious appetite for reading – books, newsletters, magazines, and particularly marketing handbooks – as well as his strict diet. 

The half-Italian entrepreneur shuns carbs, elevating him to the ranks of tech entrepreneurs who embrace strict ‘wellness’ habits credited with helping propel them to success.

‘I cut down on carbs, because they make me sceptical,’ Beckerman once said in an interview with GQ. 

Spanish businesswoman Maria Raga

Spanish businesswoman Maria Raga

Anglo-Italian entrepreneur Simon Beckerman

Anglo-Italian entrepreneur Simon Beckerman

 Depop, which was founded by Anglo-Italian entrepreneur Simon Beckerman in 2011 and has been run by Spanish businesswoman Maria Raga since 2016, saw sales more than double last year to £49million

The pair's efforts have led the platform to become the 10th most visited shopping site among Gen Z consumers in the US

The pair's efforts have led the platform to become the 10th most visited shopping site among Gen Z consumers in the US

The pair’s efforts have led the platform to become the 10th most visited shopping site among Gen Z consumers in the US

Depop has been gobbled up by Brooklyn-based Etsy, which is seeking access to a younger demographic as its users' average age is 39 and the app focuses on craft and handmade items as well as second-hand clothing

Depop has been gobbled up by Brooklyn-based Etsy, which is seeking access to a younger demographic as its users' average age is 39 and the app focuses on craft and handmade items as well as second-hand clothing

Depop has been gobbled up by Brooklyn-based Etsy, which is seeking access to a younger demographic as its users’ average age is 39 and the app focuses on craft and handmade items as well as second-hand clothing

‘[It’s a] weird thing to say, but there was a famous artist… He was Italian, [but] wrote that people needed to stop eating pasta, because carbs make you tired and sceptical. 

‘I thought I couldn’t do meetings before lunchtime because I’m always nervous, but then I realised I was so used to eating sugary stuff that I got heavy, like, half an hour later. I got tired and couldn’t function.’ 

Although Depop declined to reveal how much Beckerman, 47, (pictured)would make from the sale, The Guardian reported that he is likely to net £45million windfall

Although Depop declined to reveal how much Beckerman, 47, (pictured)would make from the sale, The Guardian reported that he is likely to net £45million windfall

Although Depop declined to reveal how much Beckerman, 47, (pictured)would make from the sale, The Guardian reported that he is likely to net £45million windfall

His success and that of Depop’s chief executive Raga, has led the platform to become the 10th most visited shopping site among Gen Z consumers in the US. 

The brand’s built its popularity by capitalising on the trend of vintage clothes becoming ‘cool’ again.

The pair are set to land a huge windfall when the site is sold to the US giant, which wants to tap into the growing Generation Z market, after sales on the platform more than doubled during the pandemic to £49million. 

The brand caught the attention of Brooklyn-based Etsy, whose users’ average age is 39 and which is now seeking access to a younger generation with the £1.2billion sale. 

By comparison, more than 90 per cent of Depop’s 30 million users in almost 150 countries are under the age of 26. 

The business now has offices in London, Manchester, New York, LA and Sydney and about 400 employees. 

Although Depop declined to reveal how much Beckerman, 47, would make from the sale, The Guardian reported that he is likely to net £45million windfall. 

His chief executive Raga, other senior employees and individual backers who have supported the business are expected to make a tidy profit. 

Announcing the deal on Wednesday, Josh Silverman, the chief executive of Etsy, told investors that a quarter of the global workforce will be Gen Z by 2030, predicted to be 1.3 billion workers.

He said he expected the resale craze would continue long after the recovery from Covid, and that it would be led by Depop’s ‘passionate community’ of fashion-conscious young people. 

‘This is an enormous demographic and it’s the trendsetter demographic,’ he told analysts on a call. 

Raga graduated from the University of Valencia with a business degree before moving to Boston to become a research associate at Harvard Business school, according to the Business of Fashion website

Raga graduated from the University of Valencia with a business degree before moving to Boston to become a research associate at Harvard Business school, according to the Business of Fashion website

Raga graduated from the University of Valencia with a business degree before moving to Boston to become a research associate at Harvard Business school, according to the Business of Fashion website

The wealthy foreign owners of London-based second-hand fashion app Depop are set for a huge cash windfall after the sale

The wealthy foreign owners of London-based second-hand fashion app Depop are set for a huge cash windfall after the sale

The wealthy foreign owners of London-based second-hand fashion app Depop are set for a huge cash windfall after the sale

Maria Raga with Italian designer Maria Grazia Chiuri, the creative director at Dior

Maria Raga with Italian designer Maria Grazia Chiuri, the creative director at Dior

Maria with fashion designer Tommy Hilfiger

Maria with fashion designer Tommy Hilfiger

Maria Raga has rubbed shoulders with high society including Italian designer Maria Grazia Chiuri, the creative director at Dior, and designer Tommy Hilfiger (right)

Raga and Beckerman with one of their high society friends Chiara Ferragni, an Italian entrepreneur, fashion blogger, influencer, and designer

Raga and Beckerman with one of their high society friends Chiara Ferragni, an Italian entrepreneur, fashion blogger, influencer, and designer

Raga and Beckerman with one of their high society friends Chiara Ferragni, an Italian entrepreneur, fashion blogger, influencer, and designer

In 2010, Raga moved to London and worked on the founding team of MyCityDeal, which was later acquired by Groupon, and in 2014 joined Depop as VP of operations, going on to become CEO of the company two years later

In 2010, Raga moved to London and worked on the founding team of MyCityDeal, which was later acquired by Groupon, and in 2014 joined Depop as VP of operations, going on to become CEO of the company two years later

In 2010, Raga moved to London and worked on the founding team of MyCityDeal, which was later acquired by Groupon, and in 2014 joined Depop as VP of operations, going on to become CEO of the company two years later

He said he expected the resale craze would continue long after the recovery from Covid, and that it would be led by Depop’s ‘passionate community’ of fashion-conscious young people. 

‘This is an enormous demographic and it’s the trendsetter demographic,’ he told analysts on a call. 

Beckerman, who founded Depop when he made the app ‘for fun’ in 2011 while working at fashion magazine PIG, owns about 4 per cent of the shares. He previously said he would ‘love to sell the company for £1billion’.

Supported by his glamorous wife, Chiara, the Contributing Fashion Editor for Marie Claire Italia, he went on to build the site as he grew his family. The couple are understood to have one daughter. The couple’s social media pages show their luxury trips and holidays to Milan, Venice, Mexico and flights to San Fransciso in the US. 

Depop was initially as a social network site where readers could buy items featured in a magazine, before it was overhauled as a platform where you can see what other people are liking, buying and selling.  

Describing his business, Beckerman previously said: ‘I think of Depop as a rebellious little kid who is not satisfied with what’s out there, and always wants to challenge itself to find what’s interesting and exciting.’ 

He was careful and meticulous with his hiring policy in a bid to emulate the success of companies like Google who employ what is best described as a ‘unique hiring culture’. 

Although Beckerman’s specific hiring methods are unclear, they helped build a successful business that in June 2019 raised $62 million in a Series C funding round, which drew the attention of Klarna founder and CEO Sebastian Siemiatkowski among others. 

This was also in part to the work of Depop’s chief executive Maria Raga, who previously worked at Groupon, and who took over the reins as in 2016 after Beckerman stepped down as CEO and joined Depop’s board.  

Beckerman, who founded Depop when he made the app 'for fun' in 2011 while working at fashion magazine PIG, owns about 4 per cent of the shares. He previously said he would 'love to sell the company for £1billion'

Beckerman, who founded Depop when he made the app 'for fun' in 2011 while working at fashion magazine PIG, owns about 4 per cent of the shares. He previously said he would 'love to sell the company for £1billion'

Beckerman, who founded Depop when he made the app ‘for fun’ in 2011 while working at fashion magazine PIG, owns about 4 per cent of the shares. He previously said he would ‘love to sell the company for £1billion’

Spanish businesswoman Maria Raga

Spanish businesswoman Maria Raga

Anglo-Italian entrepreneur Simon Beckerman

Anglo-Italian entrepreneur Simon Beckerman

Describing the business, Beckerman previously said: ‘I think of Depop as a rebellious little kid who is not satisfied with what’s out there, and always wants to challenge itself to find what’s interesting and exciting’

Raga graduated from the University of Valencia with a business degree before moving to Boston to become a research associate at Harvard Business school, according to the Business of Fashion website

Raga graduated from the University of Valencia with a business degree before moving to Boston to become a research associate at Harvard Business school, according to the Business of Fashion website

Raga graduated from the University of Valencia with a business degree before moving to Boston to become a research associate at Harvard Business school, according to the Business of Fashion website

Beckerman, who founded Depop when he made the app 'for fun' in 2011 while working at fashion magazine PIG, owns about 4 per cent of the shares. He previously said he would 'love to sell the company for £1billion'

Beckerman, who founded Depop when he made the app 'for fun' in 2011 while working at fashion magazine PIG, owns about 4 per cent of the shares. He previously said he would 'love to sell the company for £1billion'

 Beckerman, who founded Depop when he made the app ‘for fun’ in 2011 while working at fashion magazine PIG, owns about 4 per cent of the shares. He previously said he would ‘love to sell the company for £1billion’

Beckerman and Raga (pictured) will be toasting their success after the site sells to US giant Etsy, who want to tap into the growing Generation Z market, after sales on the platform more than doubled during the pandemic to £49million

Beckerman and Raga (pictured) will be toasting their success after the site sells to US giant Etsy, who want to tap into the growing Generation Z market, after sales on the platform more than doubled during the pandemic to £49million

Beckerman and Raga (pictured) will be toasting their success after the site sells to US giant Etsy, who want to tap into the growing Generation Z market, after sales on the platform more than doubled during the pandemic to £49million

Beckerman in Tulum, Mexico

Beckerman in Tulum, Mexico

His glamorous wife, Chiara, in Venice

His glamorous wife, Chiara, in Venice

Beckerman lives a luxury lifestyle with his glamorous wife, Chiara, the Contributing Fashion Editor for Marie Claire Italia, he went on to build the site as he grew his family. The couple’s social media pages show their luxury trips and holidays to Milan, Venice, Mexico and flights to San Fransciso in the US (pictured)

Raga graduated from the University of Valencia with a business degree before moving to Boston to become a research associate at Harvard Business school, according to the Business of Fashion website.

She then cut her teeth at Bain & Company, working as a management consultant for five years, obtained an MBA from INSEAD, and led business development at private sales company Privalia. 

In 2010, Raga moved to London and worked on the founding team of MyCityDeal, which was later acquired by Groupon, and in 2014 joined Depop as VP of operations, going on to become CEO of the company two years later.  

Within 24 months, the company doubled in size under her tenure, and in 2020 had over 200 employees and offices in London, Manchester, New York, Los Angeles, and Australia.

She did this with a tenacity and adopted what she described as a ‘fighter attitude’ to forge ahead in the tech field. 

‘I loved the adrenaline of pushing for the business, of seeing the business grow, and all the challenges that come with it,’ she previously told Hero shopping platform. 

‘It’s a fighter kind of attitude you need when you’re in this role.’  

Singer-songwriter Lily Allen is among the celebrities who use Depop to sell their past outfits, while young users are going ‘full-time’ on the site by selling thousands of items a month.  

Beckerman and his wife

Beckerman and his wife

The pair have been together for 10 years

The pair have been together for 10 years

The couple, who have been together for 10 years, are reportedly set to make £45million from the sale of Depop to the US giant 

Depop has 30 million registered users, many of them youngsters who scroll through the images and buy what they like

Depop has 30 million registered users, many of them youngsters who scroll through the images and buy what they like

Depop has 30 million registered users, many of them youngsters who scroll through the images and buy what they like

Depop was initially as a social network site where readers could buy items featured in a magazine, before it was overhauled as a platform where you can see what other people are liking, buying and selling

Depop was initially as a social network site where readers could buy items featured in a magazine, before it was overhauled as a platform where you can see what other people are liking, buying and selling

Depop was initially as a social network site where readers could buy items featured in a magazine, before it was overhauled as a platform where you can see what other people are liking, buying and selling

Depop was initially as a social network site where readers could buy items featured in a magazine, before it was overhauled as a platform where you can see what other people are liking, buying and selling

Depop was initially as a social network site where readers could buy items featured in a magazine, before it was overhauled as a platform where you can see what other people are liking, buying and selling

Though for many sellers on Depop the money generated is a ‘side-hustle’, Bella McFadden, 24, who sells via a store called ‘@internetgirl’, said last year she hit the £1million milestone last summer. 

McFadden, who lives in LA, told Fast Company she dropped out of college in 2016 to work on her Depop store full-time and now employs four people full time to work with her. To date, she has sold 61,491 items. 

Beckerman has sold 26 items, mostly trainers, most recently a navy pair of Converse All Star trainers for £30. 

On a listing for a £130 pair of black/silver Nike Air Max 97s, he said: ‘Back in the early days of the internet I used to hunt these on Japanese classified websites and resell them in Europe to collectors. 

‘Nike subsequently released them in this colour around 10 years ago, and now again recently for the second time. This pair is brand new deadstock and I’m selling them because they’re not my size.’

In an interview with TechCrunch, Raga said: ‘Our mission is to redefine the fashion industry in the same way that Spotify did with music, or Airbnb did with travel accommodation.’ 

Etsy said Depop's HQ will stay in London, and it will be run by its existing leadership team

Etsy said Depop's HQ will stay in London, and it will be run by its existing leadership team

Etsy said Depop's HQ will stay in London, and it will be run by its existing leadership team

Etsy said Depop's HQ will stay in London, and it will be run by its existing leadership team

Etsy said Depop’s HQ will stay in London, and it will be run by its existing leadership team

The Spanish businessman said of the takeover: ‘We’re on an incredible journey building Depop into a place where the next generation comes to explore unique fashion and be part of a community that’s changing the way we shop. They come to Depop for the clothes, but stay for the culture.’ 

Depop has around 30 million registered users, many of them youngsters who scroll through the images and buy what they like. This technology has also helped to build a sense of community between its users – many follow particular sellers for fashion advice or curated style tips. 

Beckerman said: ‘This summer marks 10 years since Depop was founded, and I’m delighted to see it mark this anniversary by beginning an exciting new chapter. 

‘What Depop offers – easy access to unique fashion and a vibrant creative community – is truly distinctive.’ 

The deal will also rake in a generous return for venture capital firms, including General Atlantic, Creandum, Octopus Ventures and Balderton Capital. But the takeover is a blow to British business, as the country loses ownership of another promising tech start-up. 

Etsy said Depop’s HQ will stay in London, and it will be run by its existing leadership team. 

Link hienalouca.com

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