LOS ANGELES — A car buff and restaurateur have entered the streetwear fray with an interesting proposition, creating an urban label inspired by car culture.
Peaches, which has one foot in South Korea and another in Los Angeles, last year raised about $550,000 through angel investors and is in the midst of raising its Series A, expected to close this month and land somewhere in the range of $1.5 million to $3 million. The capital infusion will be used to open a store on Fairfax Avenue as early as the end of this year at the site of a former gas station, which will be incorporated into the overall design of the space. There will also be a car warehouse in Orange County opening this year that would serve as a hangout of sorts for the core car consumer to come in and check out the cars being built.
The company is currently direct-to-consumer online, but will eventually expand into wholesale with higher-end boutiques.
Pop-ups to test into the South Korean and U.K. markets are also slated for this year.
The slated retail and warehouse openings speak to the duality of the Peaches brand.
“Opening the store on Fairfax, that’s a very street fashion and relevant [address]… and at the same time we have to stay relevant to the car culture,” chief executive officer and cofounder Intaek Ryo said. “The fashion, the trend, is in L.A., but the car trend is in Orange County.”
Peaches stemmed from the actual peach emoji, from which the company’s logo is derived. The team began placing that logo on cars and doing car videos, which chief technology officer and cofounder David Kim said has been integral to the brand’s growth.
“There were people following this trend of putting the Peaches logo on everything even though it doesn’t mean anything, so that was only possible through the [social] media,” Ryo said. “It was all thanks to YouTube and Instagram because without that media power, I don’t think we could reach outside of Korea.”
Kim added “crazy visuals” are what have helped propel the brand.
The types of companies the brand is aligned with are interesting and could work in its favor as it seeks to create a name for itself as a label straddling the worlds of streetwear and car culture.
Peaches is set to work with Hyundai later this year and also has partnerships with Hankook Tire, Recaro and BMW, in addition to drone-maker DJI and Samsung.
They are big names that help keep Peaches close to its ties in the automotive and tech worlds and to stay true to its core consumer. Meanwhile, the larger companies remain relevant in the eyes of younger consumers.
“Our target is Millennials, 20 to 35, right now — whoever is interested in the car culture or street fashion,” Ryo said. “But, at the same time, our vision is to expand that to noncar [enthusiasts] who are into the music videos, who are into the fashion world.”
The company’s partnership with Samsung on its Galaxy Fold includes a Gameloft x Peaches gaming experience, which at its simplest calls for playing games to win prizes, including Peaches apparel, cars and potential celebrity meetings.
“The Galaxy is a $2,000 phone, which is super, super expensive, but that works with our target [consumer] who can be the hype guys [for the brand],” Ryo said.
The company in November launched a same-day delivery service, but done its own way using a Lamborghini. The idea was born out of the team’s own frustration with how slow shipping times can be, so it took matters into its own hand with the Lamborghini delivering product to customers in Los Angeles and Orange counties.
Most — about 80 percent — of the company’s revenue is generated from apparel, with the remainder coming from car accessories, such as belts and gloves. Hoodies start at $150, while car parts are around $400 to $500 and produced in limited quantities.
Apparel, in the near term, will continue to account for most of the revenue as the company maintains focus on that segment of the business.