MadeiraMadeira tackles the offline furniture market with an online mindset
On January 7th 2021, MadeiraMadeira, a Brazilian homeware marketplace, became the first unicorn this year in Latin America, with its latest investment round of USD 190 million. Led by the Latin American investment fund of SoftBank, contributors to the compounded USD 1 billion valuation included Flybridge, Velt Partners, Brasil Capital, Lakewood Capital, and Monashees.
MadeiraMadeira, founded in 2009 by Daniel Scandian, Marcelo Scandian and Robson Privado, has taken full advantage of the surge in online shopping by reinforcing its ecommerce platform, while at the same time, expanding its offline infrastructure with new warehouses, showrooms and retail facilities. Offline showrooms have proven particularly important during COVID-19 times, as costumers who do not want to be in large department stores for exposure to the virus, can visit them and subsequently complete orders online with delivery to their homes. Although familiar to countries where conglomerates, like IKEA, are present, given its absence in Brazil, MadeiraMadeira is quickly turning into the market leader with expansion plans.
The strengthening of both online and offline infrastructure, partnered with people spending more time at home, has led to a rise in sales. Before the pandemic, ecommerce penetration stood roughly at 7% in Brazil and 5% in the region. The company estimates that at the height of the pandemic, penetration rose up to 17%, which later stabilized at 10%.
Needless to say, the recent soaring of sales contributed to the latest round of investments. Since the majority of its 1,300 employees focus on technology, logistics and products development, the capital raised will be used to add new warehouse, expanding on its ten locations around the country. Considering IKEA, a competitor with a large global outreach, does not have a presence in South America yet, it is only matter of time until we see MadeiraMadeira heading overseas.