There’s a new billion-dollar darling with a growing resale angle.
Chrono24, a digital marketplace platform for new and pre-owned luxury watches, raised more than 100 million euros, or $118 million, from a group of top-shelf inventors, scoring a valuation of more than $1 billion.
The Series C fundraising round was led by private equity standout General Atlantic and included funds from LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton chief executive officer Bernard Arnault’s Aglaé Ventures, Insight Partners and Sprints Capital.
Based in Karlsruhe, Germany, the company has raised more than 200 million euros to date.
Chrono24 plans to use the new money to deepen its presence in the 100 countries where it already operates and to keep ramping up in the pre-owned watch market.
That puts the company in sync with the growing emphasis on resale — which stretches from sustainability-minded consumers to investors and includes The RealReal Inc., ThredUp, Poshmark and more. Platform companies are also in vogue, sitting at the crossroads between buyers and selling and facilitating the transaction.
Chrono24 was founded in 2003 as a peer-to-peer marketplace and has gained real scale as it has evolved. The marketplace carries about 500,000 watches from more than 3,000 retailers and 30,000-plus private sellers, reaching better than 9 million unique visitors a month.
Chrono24 will continue to be led by founder and co-CEO Tim-Stracke, co-CEO Holger Felgner and chief financial officer Stephan Kniewasser.
Stracke said, “As originators of the digital marketplace concept within the luxury watch world, we’ve built a platform that not only supports and encourages evolving consumer behavior, but also provides invaluable proof of concept to an industry that has traditionally shied away from disruption.”
And Jörn Nikolay, managing director responsible for General Atlantic’s operations in Germany, said: “Chrono24 has become a global pioneer in the creation of a cross-border online marketplace for luxury watches, with an innovative model underpinned by transparency and sustainability.”
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