Lyst is set to have a high-profile new investor, according to reports: LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton. The Paris-based luxury goods behemoth, which owns Louis Vuitton, Dior, Givenchy, Celine, and Fendi, among other fashion and non-fashion brands, is has provided the greatest amount of funds in a new multi-million dollar injection into the London-based fashion search engine.
The latest round of funding, which according to reports from a number of British news outlets, is slated to be announced this week, is expected to be 8-year old Lyst’s first round since 2015. Three years ago, the global fashion search platform raised $40 million from investors, including investment firm Groupe Arnault, which is LVMH's controlling shareholder.
Also involved in that round: Venture capital firms, such as Accel Partners – which has invested in fledging luggage brand Away, sneaker resale site Goat, and Birchbox – and Balderton Capital, which has funded resale sites, depop and Vestiaire Collective, in over the past few years.
Sources close to LVMH say that the Bernard Arnault-chaired group’s “interest in backing Lyst may indicate an eventual desire to acquire the e-commerce company outright.”
Lyst, which boasts a roster of about 70 million users annually, connects shoppers with more than five million fashion products from thousands of the world's leading brands – including LVMH-owned Givenchy, Celine, Marc Jacobs, Pucci, and Loewe, to name a few – by way of third-party online retailers.
According to CrunchBase, Groupe Arnault has invested in e-commerce retailer Spring (taking part in three separate rounds of funding) and Korean eyewear brand Gentle Monster, while LVMH, itself, has active investments in industry site Business of Fashion and e-commerce pre-sale site Moda Operandi.
UPDATED (May 24, 2018): London-based Lyst confirmed the latest round of funding but did not disclose how much it has raised in the round, which was led by LVMH and included other investors. The total investment raised was between 50 million and 100 million pounds ($67-$134 million), a source familiar with the matter told Reuters.
LVMH’s digital chief Ian Rogers will sit on Lyst’s board following the group’s investment.
The firm’s existing investors include venture capital firms Accel, Balderton, Draper Esprit, 14W and a U.S. hedge fund.