StockX reaches Unicorn Status

StockX has officially reached a $1 billion valuation after its most recent funding round, according to co-founder Josh Luber.

The company also announced that Scott Cutler would be taking over as CEO. Cutler was formerly a Senior Vice President for the Americas at eBay. Prior to that, he was president of StubHub, and was an executive vice president at the New York Stock Exchange.

The sneakerhead visionary behind creating a "stock market of things" will remain the company's frontman, pitching the concept of both StockX's bread-and-butter secondary marketplace for rare Adidas Yeezy sneakers and the potential for highly coveted consumer goods to bypass traditional retail outlets and go straight to StockX.com.

"We didn't realize in the beginning how important it was going to be to explain how powerful this model is," Luber. "The whole reason we've grown like this really is because of the model. But it's not a simple concept, particularly when we say 'stock market of things.' That's not something people get right away and understand why this is better than eBay and why this is better than a consignment model."

Since launching in February 2016, the StockX website's annual sales growth has leaped to $1 billion in gross merchandise volume, and the company has grown to 820 employees, half of whom are based in Detroit, according to the company.

While Luber will retain the title of co-founder, remain on the board of directors and be a face of the StockX brand for buyers, sellers and manufacturers of sneakers and other collectible goods, Cutler plans to map out the infrastructure of expanding the company's global footprint with an eye toward selling publicly traded stock in a company that publicly trades hard-to-find Air Jordan sneakers and Gucci handbags.

StockX, which has an authentication center for processing orders in Detroit's Corktown, is about to open its fifth authentication center in Veldhoven, Eindhoven region, expanding its reach into the European market. StockX has more than doubled its workforce since last summer, when Luber had 300 employees in Detroit and 50 at an authentication center in Tempe, Ariz., to serve west coast sellers and buyers. 

The new $110 million round of private financing will help the company build out its technological capabilities for processing online sales and payments, authenticating products and shipping them to buyers. StockX charges sellers a fee of 7 percent to 9.5 percent on sales — and buyers pay $10 to $13.95 for shipping.

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Source: CNBC & Crains Detroit Business