Photo: Magnus Unnar, courtesy of Joe Einhorn
We just reported that Thing Daemon, which runs a Pinterest-like shopping site called The Fancy, has raised another $26 million and added an American Express executive to its board.How did it manage that?
Two words: mobile commerce.
Thing Daemon CEO Joe Einhorn started out building a database of objects. That turned into The Fancy, an app where people browse through images of objects and bookmark, or “fancy,” the ones they like.
But in February, Einhorn took a major turn by adding the ability to buy things right from the Fancy website and app. In just a few months, it was doing $10,000 a day in sales. It’s since tripled that to about $200,000 a week, the company now tells us.
That’s tiny compared to, say, Fab, the design-oriented flash sales site. And The Fancy’s Web traffic is microscopic compared to Pinterest, which has a thousand times its audience.
But mobile is where The Fancy’s having success. On the Google Play store for Android apps, it has between 1 million and 5 million installations. (Google only publishes a vague range.) Pinterest’s Android app is in the same range, and Google shows The Fancy taking off, while Pinterest is holding steady.
The Fancy’s shopping experience on smartphones and tablets is shockingly simple—a big advantage, we reckon, as consumer usage shifts to mobile.
It’s also experimenting with subscription commerce and gift cards.
It’s not clear how serious deal talks ever got, but The Fancy’s fundraising will likely put a crimp in any plans to snap up the startup on the cheap. This particular piece of merchandise just got its price marked up.