The report, citing people familiar with the matter, said The RealReal is mulling an IPO for later in 2019 and has started holding discussions with investment banks to help it go public. Reuters reported the high-end luxury online retailer has issued a request for proposal to potential advisors and underwriters to take The RealReal public in 2019. In July the company raised $115 million, led by Perella Weinberg Partners. Other investors to participate in that round included Sandbridge Capital and Great Hill Partners. The company was valued at $745 million as a result of the funding round. At the time, The RealReal CEO and founder Julie Wainwright said in a press release that: “over the last seven years, we have re-envisioned the experience of buying and selling luxury goods, and become a leader in the circular economy for luxury goods.” In the prior year, The RealReal received $50 million in funding from Great Hill Partners.
Since raising the money, The RealReal has been focused on growing the number of physical stores it has and beefing up its online fulfillment centers. It’s not alone in focusing on expanding the number of online fulfillment centers it has. With eCommerce booming, a slew of eCommerce merchants are looking for retail space to serve as warehouses to meet the online demand of consumers. A recent report from the CBRE Group found 56 of the largest 100 warehouse leases in the first half of 2018 were with eCommerce firms and third-party logistics providers. “The supply chain arms race is as competitive as it’s ever been,” said Adam Mullen, CBRE’s senior managing director of industrial and logistics.
The RealReal is riding the demand in eCommerce, the interest on the part of millennials in using recycled clothing and the caution on the part of the luxury brands in terms of what they can do online. Farfetch, a rival to The RealReal, went public in September of 2018 at the high end of its IPO price range. FarFetch was able to raise $885 million, reported Reuters.