Retail me, a retail ecommerce startup based in Los Angeles, has raised $1.7 million from Chinese venture capital firm HCM Capital Partners, with a focus on ecommerce platforms and retail brands.
The round was led by HCM Ventures, and is part of an ongoing round of funding for the company.
Retail me was founded in 2017 by Yimou Hu, who previously worked at a Chinese online retailer.
In 2016, Hu joined Alibaba Group as a senior vice president and has since moved on to join Retail Me as its CEO.
In 2017, Retail Me launched an online store for its first batch of products, and also started to make its own branded products.
In 2017, Hu set out to develop a retail solution for China.
“The idea of a retailing business was never one of our top priorities, but we saw the market opportunity and were able to see how the technology can be applied to this,” Hu told FT.
“We saw the value of the consumer experience, and we saw that people were buying more things online and on the platform.”
In 2018, Hu announced that the company would be expanding its platform, bringing its total retail to 20,000 locations across China.
The company has been growing at a phenomenal rate, and Hu expects the growth to continue for at least the next six years.
Retails me is one of the earliest ecommerce brands in China, having launched in 2016.
In 2018, Retail me expanded its online store to the United States, and now also plans to launch in Canada, Australia and New Zealand.
Hu told The Register that the new expansion plans were inspired by the launch of a new brand in Australia in 2021, which had over 100 stores.
Hu has said that Retail Me was not an easy journey to make.
“In the first three months, I had to deal with many issues that I didn’t think would happen,” he told TheRegister.
“For example, how to take a risk on a new product, how do we sell to customers that aren’t used to the brand.
There were many times where I couldn’t have made it to a marketer or a partner if I didn�t have a plan in place.”
In the US, Retail ME has been in the midst of launching a series of new brands, including the popular e-commerce app MyEbay, which is set to launch later this year.
As the company expands its offerings, it will be interesting to see if this new growth comes at the expense of existing brands, or if it comes at no cost to its growth.