The founders of the online fashion giant Asos and private equity firm Lion Capital are pumping money into a beauty salon that’s looking to launch a nationwide chain of New York-style blow dry bars.
Robert Darwent and Lyndon Lea of Lion and Asos’s Nick Robertson are among investors putting $6.5m into blow LTD, which was founded by the former Balderton Capital deal maker Dharmash Mistry and Fiona McIntosh, a former editor of Grazia magazine.
The company opened its first beauty salon in London’s Covent Garden last year after raising an initial $2.5m and is planning a second in the Canary Wharf financial district in November. The new funds will be used to open sites outside London.
Mr Mistry, who is also a non-executive director at the BBC, said: "The fundamental consumer insight behind the company is that ‘looking great doesn’t have to cost a fortune or take forever.’ We found the beauty market has become more premium … and the services on offer tended to be more spa like.
"Customers may want a day spa visit on a weekend, but they also want a 30 minute shot of confidence at one of our fast beauty bars before the 7:30am meeting, a lunch date or before going out with the girls."
The business sells more than 1,000 beauty products online while the "fast" beauty bars offer 30-minute blow dries and 15-minute manicures and make-up.
Blow LTD has already sold around 2,000 services a month in its Covent Garden salon and sells more than 70 brands online. Currently the ecommerce sales are growing at over 20 per cent a month.
Mr Mistry added: “Our model is predicated on the future of retail being more experienced based in store vs shelves or racks of products.”Reuse content