Blitsy Secures $1 Million in Funding from Chicago Ventures, FireStarter Fund, and Group of Leading Angel Investors
9/10/2013 – Blitsy, Inc. the Chicago-based online craft retailer, today announced a $1.01 million Seed investment led by Chicago Ventures. Also joining in this funding are FireStarter Fund, Lakewest Venture Partners (an investment group that consists of contributions from Buzz Ruttenberg and partners David Mann and Jonathon McCulloch), and a strong group of angel investors including Brian Spaly (CEO of Trunk Club and Bonobos Co-Founder), Lon Chow (General Partner of Apex Venture Capital), and Binh Tran (Technical Co-Founder of Klout) among other leading angel investors.
Blitsy has built one of the fastest-growing crafting businesses in the U.S. and has bootstrapped its way to over 100,000 members and shipped over 50,000 orders since launching to the public on November 25th, 2011 (Black Friday). Blitsy provides a marketing platform that craft suppliers can utilize to launch online promotions while providing Blitsy members with access to exclusive deals on craft supplies. The site also provides a stage for sharing inspirational project ideas among other features geared toward community engagement.
“Blitsy provides a unique way to shop for deals on craft supplies, providing a winning proposition for the companies we support as well as our rapidly growing member-base,” said Ross Petersen, Blitsy Chief Executive Officer. “Our new investors have collectively built some of the most successful companies in the world, and that operational experience will be extremely helpful as we scale our company to meet the demands of this growing $30B market.”
The company’s founders, twin brothers Ross and Ryan Petersen, along with their sister Katy Weade, previously sold their last Arts and Crafts startup business, a digital scrapbooking and SaaS platform built for craft retailers named ScrapHD, to Michaels Stores in 2010. “Ross, Ryan and Katy have a unique perspective having built a successful business in the craft space and selling it to the market leader, Michaels,” said investor Lon Chow, General Partner, Apex Venture Partners. “They will use their extensive technology and marketing expertise to help craft suppliers combat growing trends such as Private Label from big box retailers that force the suppliers to go direct to consumer.”
“We have a unique perspective having worked in small, medium, and enterprise sized companies, all of which are dealing with a virtual world that continues to evolve and change the physical world around us,” added Ross. “Our core competency in ecommerce allows partner suppliers to focus on creating new products that our members get to discover via Blitsy.”
Blitsy is an online retailer focused on the $30B+ Arts and Crafts industry. Blitsy provides craft suppliers with a unique selling outlet that doubles as risk-free digital promotion. The founding team is passionate about crafting and provides an authentic voice to its growing customer base. Blitsy members love receiving discounts on items they need while discovering new products to add to their stash of craft supplies.