London-based independent retailer network StreetHub has raised a £1.7m round led by Octopus Ventures, along with bringing in further cash from existing investors Index, Playfair Capital and previous angels.
The company has also announced a slick rebrand, unveiling its Trouva platform today, where items for sale among its 350-plus participating boutique retailers are curated for shoppers in a rather attractive online showroom.
Trouva is hoping to beat big brands by offering free worldwide shipping on orders over £50, as well as one-hour Shutl delivery to selected postcodes.
Mandeep Singh, cofounder of StreetHub, said: “We’ve seen huge success with our iPhone app launch last year, with over 40,000 customers using the app to discover and purchase from independent shops in their local vicinity.
“This is how we identified the compelling opportunity to also serve people who are keen to discover shops which are a little further afield too, and offer worldwide shipping. Trouva is the logical next step for us in our mission to help our amazing independent retailers to reach an even wider audience and help more customers to discover these inspiring, individual collections of products.”
On the company’s integration with London’s Shutl, which works by using excess capacity of traditional courier networks, Singh told Tech City News: “We have a real-time integration with Shutl, which allows us to dispatch a courier who then picks up the item and delivers it to the customer. Our fastest delivery was within 27 minutes.
“Currently we offer Shutl as a fulfilment method when you buy products from one shop and the delivery postcode is within five miles radius of the shop – this is based on our experience trialing Shutl over the last year.”
This is the second round of early-stage funding raised by StreetHub, which received an £800,000 seed round in December 2013, led by both Octopus and Index.