Lauren Santo Domingo's e-commerce site Moda Operandi, the go-to source for $270 beach towels, is now seeking additional investors. At yesterday's Reuters Luxury and Fashion Summit, the site's co-founder and CEO Aslaug Magnusdottir announced that they've started their second round of venture capital funding (they got their initial funding from venture capital firm New Atlantic Ventures), adding that there's been a lot of interest from various parties. "The recent successes of Gilt [Groupe], Rue La La and Net-a-Porter being sold has really made this a much more interesting sector for a lot of investors," she explained.
Magnusdottir, who was formerly a vice-president at Gilt Groupe, also disclosed some specifics about the site's performance so far: It's launched with 15,000 members in February (to compare, Gilt Groupe has well over 2 million), and they're shooting to reach 100,000 members by the end of the year. It makes sense that they'd have a smaller customer base, since the number of people willing to fill out a multi-step application form to peruse $5,000 Marchesa gowns is relatively small (and they do reject some people). Meanwhile, they expect to be profitable by the end of 2012, although she didn't disclose any hard financial data.
Update: This post has been corrected from an earlier version.