Online Fashion Giant Revolve Soars Through Its Market Debut

June 7, 2019

By Spencer Feingold

The major online fashion retailer, Revolve Group LLC, made an impressive market debut on Friday, with opening shares trading at $25.16 a piece.

The company's initial public offering was priced at $18 a share, which was already at the high end of its expected $16 to $18 price range. Revolve raised $212 million in its IPO.

"For us the time is right. We are at the scale where going public makes sense," Jesse Timmermans, the company's chief financial officer, told Cheddar in an interview Friday. "We feel very good about where we are and the path forward."

Revolve' stock now trades under the ticker RVLV on the New York Stock Exchange.

Since its founding in 2003 by two friends, the e-commerce giant has grown to employ over 1,000 people and carry over 500 major brands, including Levi's, Nike, Calvin Klein, and The North Face.

The site boasted an average of 9.4 million monthly unique visitors and nearly $500 million in net sales in 2018. Revolve reported $30.6 million in net income last year, an increase of 512 percent from 2017, according to the company's filings with the federal Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

Unlike several other major companies that went public in recent months, Revolve is a profitable business — and has been for 15 of the company's 16 years in existence, according to Timmermans.

"It is important to us to grow the business at a healthy pace," Timmermans added. "We've lived through two recessions already, we have a strong balance sheet so that balance growth and profitability is super important."

In its SEC filing, the company said it plans to expand with growth in several sectors of the global apparel market, which totaled $2.9 trillion in 2018 and is expected to increase to $3.4 trillion by 2021. Specific sectors include footwear, accessories, and beauty products.

"We believe the key drivers shaping growth within these markets include favorable demographic trends, constant product newness and the proliferation of emerging brands, as well as an increased focus on fashion and beauty as a reflection of self-expression," Revolve wrote in its filing.

The company has also enjoyed enormous success from it marketing on social media. Revolve partners with numerous social media influencer to promote the brand and has organized major gatherings at events like Coachella.

In March, the company was also one of a handful of brands to partner with Instagram for the launch of Checkout on Instagram, a feature that allows users on the platform to make purchases from advertisers without leaving the app.

"We'll go where the customer tells us to go. Right now that just happens to be on social media," Timmermans said.

By mid-afternoon Friday, Revolve's stock was trading up nearly 30 percent from its opening price.