Sosandar raises more than £5m in share placing

Sosandar's co-founders
Julie Lavington and Ali Hall

Sosandar, the online womenswear brand, has completed a successful share placing raising close to £5.3m to fund the expansion of the business in particular with third-party partners.

The AIM-listed business said the placing was over-subscribed and the proceeds would be used to “capitalise on the growth opportunity with third-party retailers” and engage further third-party retailers in the UK and internationally and to provide additional working capital.

Sosandar was established in 2016 – and floated in 2017, – by former fashion publishing executives Julie Lavington and Ali Hall to provide an online destination for women, who were seeking trend-led fashion but who had outgrown the fast fashion retailers.

Initially available only via its own website, it has since signed up major third-party retail partners including Next, John Lewis and Marks & Spencer.

All three partners have identified Sosandar as a high growth brand and product lines have been very well received with many of Sosandar’s styles selling out across the third party platforms. In addition to the incremental revenue growth through these third party partnerships, Sosandar benefits from increased brand awareness across its target market whilst accelerating improvement in EBITDA.

“Against a backdrop of improving trading visibility as lockdown restrictions are eased, the Board believes that Sosandar, as a pureplay e-commerce business, is very well positioned to capitalise on the continuing adoption of shopping online which has accelerated over the last twelve months or so and expanded the company’s long-term market opportunity. These trends underpin the board’s confidence in the long-term opportunity for further growth, both through the company’s own website and with its third party retail partners,” Sosandar said when announcing the share placing.

Sosandar said it would be looking to expand the ranges offered via third party websites, which, on average, only sell 9% of its full range.

In particular, focus will be on investing in stock from the AW21 season onwards, including increasing both the number of styles and the number units per style to be sold through the third party partner websites.

The net proceeds of the placing will also provide the company with additional funding to engage with other third party partners in the UK and internationally.

Sosandar said it had a strong Q4 for FY21 (January – March 2021), recording revenue of £3.94m (a 63% increase over the corresponding period in the prior year). Customer activity stepped up each month during the quarter, with record revenue delivered in March 2021, which was up 66% compared with January 2021 and up 163% on the lockdown impacted March 2020.

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