In the News

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in the news

Leap stores and brands
in the news

How Naadam is subtracting risk from its physical retail expansion

For many direct-to-consumer brands, from Allbrids to Modern Citizen, opening physical retail locations is the next step in the growth journey. Not only can it grow sales and gain customers, but it often leads to upticks in e-commerce sales in surrounding areas . . .​
Democratizing Luxury With Affordable Cashmere

Sometimes getting lost — even in an incredibly foreign or hostile place — can turn out to be a surprisingly profitable experience. That was a lesson learned by Naadam Founder and CEO Matthew Scanlan when he found himself lost in Mongolia’s Gobi desert and taken in by local goat farmers . . .​
How Two Millennial Women Disrupted The Bridal Industry And Landed Serena Williams As Investor

Floravere, a direct-to-consumer wedding dress company, is the brainchild of Molly Kang and Denise Jin, two friends who set out together to disrupt the traditional bridal industry . . .​
High-End Sneaker Brand Koio Kicks It In Lincoln Park

The resurgence of luxury retailers on Armitage Avenue continues with Koio, which has brought its high-end sneakers to Lincoln Park’s hottest shopping district. “Koio’s clean, minimalistic aesthetic is a natural fit for Chicago,” says brand cofounder and co-CEO Chris Wichert of the decision . . .​
Chicago Startup Leap Raises $3M to Help Digital Brands Launch Retail Stores

Along with helping brands build out and design their retail shops, Leap also handles technology needs like mobile checkout, virtual in-store shopping, and the ability to buy online and return in any Leap store—regardless of brand . . .​
This Startup Helps High-Growth DTC Brands Like Koio De-Risk Retail

Talk to Leap co-founder and co-CEO Amish Tolia and VP of brand management Jon Levy long enough and you’ll hear a lot about “risk.” Leap was born out of the need to address the burgeoning crop of brands that grow up online but need a helping hand to manage the complexities of putting down real-world . . .​
Inside sneaker brand Koio’s plan for rapid retail expansion

A year ago, 4-year-old digitally native sneaker brand Koio had only a single store. Now it has six stores and a pop-up in Los Angeles for the month of August. The reason it’s been able to scale quickly is that it only operates three of those stores itself, said Chris Wichert, co-founder of Koio . . .
D2C infrastructure: How to invest in the shift toward micro-brands without investing in micro-brands

Leap is all about simplifying physical retail operations into a single line item on the company’s P&L, paid on a percent of sales basis . . .​
Shop Talk: Stylish Ways to Celebrate International Women's Day + More Fashion News

Koio opens doors to new real-world store, sneakerheads lose their sh*t...because SF is one of the digital-first brand's top markets. Oodles of millennial guys and girls have been adding the high-end, 100-percent made-in-Italy kicks to carts since Koio (pronounced koy-oh) hit the scene four years ago . . .
A Peek Inside Koio’s New Flagship Store in Chicago

Chicago fans of Koio have a reason to rejoice this winter. Come tomorrow, the New York luxury shoe brand will open its first flagship store in the Windy City, marking its third retail location . . .
Retail-as-a-service provider Leap raises $3M and launches first store

The past decade in retail has been the golden age of direct-to-consumer (D2C) and digitally native vertical brands . . .
This Bridal Atelier Is Changing How the Modern Woman Shops for Her Wedding Dress

Floravere knows you've started your search online—and is using that knowledge to enhance your in-store experience . . .
DTC bridal play Floravere opens NYC flagship

Walk into a typical wedding dress retail location, and the first thing customers see when they walk in the door is rows and rows of fluffy white gowns. Direct-to-consumer wedding dress brand Floravere is different. Inside the brand’s first flagship store, which opened in New York City this week, there’s not a dress in sight upon entry. . .​
Online retailers like Allbirds, Warby Parker and Bonobos are opening bricks-and-mortar stores, often in the same Chicago area

Koio was able to open its Chicago store sooner than it otherwise might have because it tapped another company, Leap, to assist with finding a location, negotiating a lease, building out the store and finding staff, Quodt said . . .​
Naadam just launched $75 cashmere sweaters–and created a whole store for them

Good news for those of you who love your cashmere but don’t want to burn a hole in your pocket. Naadam, a cashmere startup, is now selling top-grade cashmere sweaters for $75. Until now, the lowest price you could pay for high-quality cashmere was $99 . . .​

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