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Kim Kardashian’s Skims doubles in value to $3.2 billion

Kim Kardashian’s Skims doubles in value to $3.2 billion
The brand was worth $1.6 billion just nine months ago

Kim Kardashian’s underwear and loungewear brand Skims has doubled in value in nine months, following an increased demand for its products during the pandemic.

The business is now valued at $3.2 billion (£2.4 billion) – a rise from $1.6 billion (£897 million) in April 2021 – following a new round of funding from a hedge fund and investment firm, Bloomberg reports.

Skims, which is headed up by Kardashian and CEO Jens Grede, has acquired $240 million (£180 million) financing from Connecticut-based hedge fund Lone Pine Capital, New York firm D1 Capital Partners and other previously existing partners.

“This latest round will allow us to focus on bringing more innovations and solutions to our customers and become even more of a trusted resource for them,” Kardashian told the publication in an email.

The businesswoman and beauty mogul will remain the largest individual shareholder of the brand, with her and Grede retaining their controlling stakes.

Grede also confirmed that they are not looking to sell the brand at this time and don’t have plans to go public, but this might be considered later down the line.

A number of clothing retailers have reported a growth during the pandemic as a result of an increased demand for comfy clothing.

In 2020, Uniqlo announced a 4.7 per cent increase in revenue, which it largely credited to sales of loungewear. Meanwhile, a Gap spokesperson told Fox Business that loungewear was “outpacing other styles” during the pandemic.

While Skims initially launched as a shapewear brand, it has since expanded to underwear, loungewear and even dresses. Shapewear now accounts for less than 20 per cent of its total sales, while underwear makes up the majority.

The brand is highly-coveted on social media, thanks to Kardashian’s own 283 million-strong following on Instagram, where she regularly promotes its products. On TikTok, the Skims hashtag alone has almost 700 million views.

Additionally, 2021 saw the brand dabble in the luxury market, as it partnered with Italian designer Fendi on a range of swimsuits, dresses, outerwear and tights.

Morgane Le Caer, content lead at global fashion shopping platform Lyst, which sells Skims, attributed the brand’s success to how it “quickly adapted to the market’s booming demand for comfortable fashion with various popular product releases”.

“Now, as countries tentatively ease up restrictions, fashion lovers are slowly but surely adapting to this ‘new normal’, but they are doing so without sacrificing on the comfort brought by loungewear over the past 18-plus months,” Le Caer told The Independent.

Bloomberg reports that the brand saw a 90 per cent increase in sales in 2021 to around $275 (£205 million) million and expects to hit the $400 million (£299 million) mark this year.

“We see an opportunity with Skims to create our own category in retail, just like how we believe Lululemon and Starbucks created their own categories in their respective areas,” Grede said.

“That’s really why we’re doing this, to make sure we’re best prepared for the future.

“We are continuously working on collaborations, partnerships and events. More to come.”