Vessi Stops Media Spending; SmileDirect set IPO Price Range

Vessi stop media spending

DTC’s Daily Digest brings you the latest news on the world’s fastest growing direct-to-consumer brands. In today’s edition: Vessi stops media spending; SmileDirect set IPO price range; and Moneybox team up with Investec. 

Vessi stops media spending

DTC trainer brand Vessi has stopped its media spending. The Vancouver-based business, which makes waterproof sneakers made of sustainable materials, has been reducing its marketing spend over the last three months before shutting it off last week so that it can work to build up production capabilities and replenish its stock. It’s unclear exactly when it will start spending again, as that’s dependent on when its production capabilities will be capable of meeting consumer demand. 

Talking to Digiday about the ad spending, Tony Yu, co-founder, Vessi, said “We reduced it to zero. It’s kind of a scary thing to do, but at the same time it’s not. We have a massive waitlist of people wanting our shoes right now, and we’re working to [meet] that customer demand before we work to acquire new customers.” 

The company, which launched in January 2018, says it shut off advertising after it went through six months worth of stock in one month. Vessi was initially producing 5,000 pairs a month. Now, it is working to scale to be able to produce 50,000 a month.

SmileDirect set IPO price range

SmileDirectClub are targeting an IPO price range of  USD$19-22 (£16-18) per share. As the company is looking to sell over 58.5 million shares (67.3 million, inclusive of the underwriters’ option), SmileDirect is looking to raise comfortably over USD$1.1bn (£900m) on its debut. The business has noted a possible maximum raise of USD$1.48bn (£1.22bn). 

SmileDirect raised USD$380m (£312m) while private from Kleiner Perkins, Spark, Gin Lane, and a private equity firm. The Nashville-based consumer health goods company was founded in 2013, making it a younger IPO than we’ve become accustomed to seeing. And with SmileDirect working in the dental space, it’s apart from our usual technology fare. But as it is a high-growth, private company, it fits comfortably into our regular orbit.

SmileDirectClub can command the high price tag, given that it’s had sustainably strong revenue and growth. When the company first filed to go public, SmileDirect grew its revenue from USD$175.1m (£143.9m) in the first half of 2018 to USD$373.5m (£307.1m) in the first half of 2019.

Moneybox team up with Investec

Moneybox has teamed up with Investec, to launch their first traditional savings account. The partnership marks the latest in a series of fintech partnerships for the app, which teamed up with OakNorth in July

Unlike an easy access savings account or a set fixed term saver, Investec’s Moneybox account is a 95-day notice account. Notice accounts like this one with Investec offer higher interest rates than easy access savings accounts, with time-based restrictions on how quickly money can be withdrawn.

Customers can sign up to the account quickly, directly from their mobile phone and choose from a range of savings features including the round ups tool which enables you to ‘round up’ everyday purchases to the nearest pound and save the spare change. The ‘round up’ feature was how Moneybox first came to market, offering the feature (dubbed ‘pots’ by Monzo), which is now available across digital banking competitors including Monzo, Starling and Revolut. Moneybox now offers Stocks & Shares ISA, Stocks & Shares Lifetime ISA, General Investment Account, Stocks & Shares Junior ISA and now the Cash Lifetime ISA.

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