FabFitFun is getting serious about its in-house brands.
The subscription box service has brought on board Gina Kohler, cofounder of e-commerce site BeautyKind, as head of product development to nurture its ISH and Summer & Rose brands, and explore the possibility of starting additional lines. The position reunites Kohler with FabFitFun cofounder and co-chief executive officer Michael Broukhim, former vice president of strategy at BeachMint, where Kohler was general manager overseeing ShoeMint, StyleMint and IntiMint.
“FabFitFun is really differentiated. It’s a seasonal subscription box that really builds a lot of anticipation and excitement for its membership. I love the fact that it crosses categories. While there’s beauty, fashion and fitness, it branches into technology and DIY as well,” said Kohler. “The community is so thrilled with the experience, and it’s our job to continue to build upon that.”
FabFitFun’s target customers are a geographically diverse group of primarily 24- to 40-year-olds eager to discover new brands and products, according to Kohler. They pay $49.99 for boxes that are delivered four times a year and generally filled with seven to nine full-size products. FabFitFun has signed up an estimated 200,000 subscribers to its service. The company finalized a $3.5 million Series A round of funding in 2015.
You May Also Like
Kohler arrives at FabFitFun with extensive experience at subscription models on her résumé. Prior to BeachMint and BeautyKind, she spent six years in various vice president roles at direct-response television company Guthy-Renker. Talking about the advantages of subscriptions, Kohler said, “If you can deliver an experience consistently and people feel they are getting value for what they paid for and then some, you can build an emotional experience and attachment to a brand. That’s what the FabFitFun founders [Katie Kitchens, Broukhim and brother Daniel] have done so effectively. This model is proving it works.”
Last year, FabFitFun launched the beauty brand ISH, which stands for I’m Smoking Hot, in collaboration with Joey Maalouf, a celebrity makeup artist whose clients include Rachel Zoe, Molly Sims and Jessica Alba. The brand began with a contour kit for $32 and companion brushes for $18 to $28, and expanded its product selection with a $26 face primer. Also introduced last year, the lifestyle offering Summer & Rose has focused on a $32 yoga towel so far. The two brands have presences in FabFitFun’s boxes (Kohler said the goal is for them to be featured in boxes at least once annually), but ISH has broken out of the boxes with its own web site and Summer & Rose could, too.
“ISH is absolutely a brand that can be driven outside the box, and there’s nothing to stop us from looking at retail and other distribution,” said Kohler, elaborating, “You will see that ISH will be built out to become more of a proper brand. Resources have been almost 100 percent allocated to the box before. Now, we have resources dedicated to building ISH outside of it. The products are very good and, with some marketing and resources, we will start building out the web site further, and build e-mail strategies and digital marketing.”
FabFitFun may stretch its portfolio of in-house brands beyond ISH and Summer & Rose. “There are areas in the market we feel could be white spaces for building house brands, and we have influencers coming to the table with interest in collaborating,” said Kohler. “We are very opportunistic.”