How GOAT Plans to Dominate the Worldwide Luxury Apparel Market

Samson Amore

Samson Amore is a reporter for dot.LA. He previously covered technology and entertainment for TheWrap and reported on the SoCal startup scene for the Los Angeles Business Journal. Send tips or pitches to samsonamore@dot.la and find him on Twitter at @Samsonamore. Pronouns: he/him

GOAT Group chief operating officer Yunah Lee
Courtesy of Upfront Ventures

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After emerging as one of Los Angeles’ most well-funded and talked-about startups last year, online sneaker and apparel marketplace GOAT now has its sights set abroad.

Speaking at the Upfront Summit venture capital conference on Wednesday, GOAT Group chief operating officer Yunah Lee said international expansion is now the priority for the Culver City-based startup. GOAT opened offices in mainland China last year—its headcount there has already quadrupled, she noted—and also recently cut the ribbon on offices in Singapore and Japan.


Having sold $2 billion in merchandise on its platform in 2020 and doubled its valuation to $3.7 billion last year, GOAT now has 1,500 employees and 16 offices globally.

GOAT Group chief operating officer Yunah Lee speaking at the Upfront Summit.

Courtesy of GOAT

“We want to continue to focus on our international expansion in western Europe, southeast Asia and eastern Asia, and also continue to focus on our luxury fashion, apparel and accessories categories,” Lee said.

The COO mentioned that part of GOAT’s motivation for international expansion is to serve a diverse worldwide customer base that has different tastes depending on where they’re from. In Europe, she noted, many buyers don’t wear high-top shoes—whereas in the U.S., it’s virtually impossible to call yourself a sneakerhead without a pair of classic Air Jordan 1s. The Middle East, she added, is developing an insatiable appetite for Kanye West’s Yeezy shoe line.

Having a diverse customer base “allows us to create that global buyer-and-seller network to bring the products that these folks don't have access to easily,” Lee said. Geographic diversity is also key to courting luxury brands like Versace, Alexander McQueen and Polo Ralph Lauren, which are increasingly looking to outlets like GOAT as valuable resale marketplaces and have courted it for merchandise partnerships.

Launched in 2015 as a way for co-founder and CEO Eddy Lu and his college friends to authenticate real Air Jordans apart from fake ones, GOAT is now one of the hottest startups in Los Angeles, according to a recent dot.LA survey of venture capitalists. The company landed a $195 million funding round led by Park West Asset Management last June and has raised some $493 million to date, according to PitchBook data.

According to a recent study from Cowen, the sneaker and streetwear resale market is growing 20% annually and is estimated to surpass $30 billion in global sales by 2030.

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'It's Almost Winter-Agnostic': At This Annual Gathering of Creators, Recession is on No One's Mind

Kristin Snyder

Kristin Snyder is an editorial intern for dot.la. She previously interned with Tiger Oak Media and led the arts section for UCLA's Daily Bruin.

Vidcon 2022
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The creator economy is the bedrock of this week’s VidCon convention, which is drawing creators, companies, investors and fans alike to Anaheim to discuss the rapidly growing realm of digital content and entertainment.

To discuss how investors, in particular, are viewing the booming creator landscape, Thursday’s “Betting Big on the Creator Economy” panel featured the likes of MaC Venture Capital partner Zhenni Liu, Investcorp managing director Anand Radhakrishnan, Team8 Fintech managing partner Yuval Tal and Paladin co-founder and CEO James Creech.

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Netflix Lays Off Another 300 People
Photo by DCL "650" on Unsplash

Netflix has imposed its second round of layoffs in less than a month, cutting another 300 people from its staff.

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Santa Monica-Based Scooter Startup Veo Expands Into the City of LA

Maylin Tu
Maylin Tu is a freelance writer who lives in L.A. She writes about scooters, bikes and micro-mobility. Find her hovering by the cheese at your next local tech mixer.
Veo
Image courtesy of Veo

Three months after opening its new headquarters in Santa Monica, micromobility startup Veo is expanding its fleet and its footprint. As of last week, riders have been able to cross the municipal boundary between Santa Monica and L.A. and take trips north to Will Rogers State Beach, south to Marina Del Rey and east to Mar Vista.

“It’s good to see more people able to actually commute from Santa Monica to a nearby neighborhood…because in the past, we [did] see a lot of people stopped at the boundary,” said Veo CEO Candice Xie.

A screenshot shows Veo scooters' new availability on the west side of the city of L.A.

Still, riders will not be able to ride all through the city of L.A. The city of L.A. has only granted them permits for 500 vehicles. Xie said they’re focusing on expanding the boundaries of where their mostly Santa Monica-based users are already indicating they want to ride.

As part of the expansion, the company is adding a mixed fleet of 400 e-bikes and 100 standing scooters.

Enterprising riders who venture beyond the new, expanded geofenced zone can expect to receive a warning text message and for their vehicle to come to a slow stop. In addition, they will not be allowed to leave the e-scooter or e-bike outside of the zone without incurring a penalty that starts at $15.

Currently, it costs riders $1 to unlock and $0.33 cents per minute to ride (plus tax and fees). Residents of Santa Monica and Los Angeles who qualify can apply to ride at a reduced rate through Veo Access, where riders pay $5 per month for unlimited 30 minute rides.

Xie said that the permit approval process for the city of L.A. took longer than originally anticipated and that this new expansion will happen in phases, with the next phase anticipated in two to three months.

Veo is the seventh micromobility operator currently permitted in the city of Los Angeles, joining rivals Bird, Lime, Wheels, LINK (Superpedestrian), Lyft and Spin.

Veo’s expansion comes at a precarious time for the shared micromobility market. Earlier this month, Santa Monica-based Bird laid off 23% of its staff. Layoffs were also reported at both Superpedestrian and Voi this week.

However, Xie said that Veo is doubling down on both the greater L.A. area and California as a whole, as it recently launched in Berkeley and intends to move into Santa Clara and San Jose soon. As other companies lay off workers in pursuit of profitability, Xie said Veo is expanding.

“We're still hiring from the community and want to increase our exposure and also have more local talent join us.”

Correction: An earlier version of this post stated that Veo vehicles were already available in Santa Clara.

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