Etsy Raises $40 Million, Aims for World Domination

Libby Kane
Posted

We can probably thank Etsy for making the word “fascinator” part of common parlance.

And their contributions go beyond that. The online DIY marketplace is a first stop for many budding or already successful entrepreneurs (actually, for 875,000 of them), who are able to showcase and sell their goods to an audience more than usually receptive to whimsy. After all, that’s who visits Etsy, to the tune of 40 million visits per month.

(We certainly aren’t immune to its charms!)

Investors have recognized Etsy’s worth, which is probably obvious to anyone who knows that it processed $525 million in sales last year.

The New York Times reports that in their latest round of funding, the site raised $40 million from venture capital firms such as Index Ventures, Accel Partners and Union Square Ventures, on top of the $51 million they raised previously. (Disclosure: Accel Partners also backs LearnVest.)

The money will be used to help Etsy expand into other countries. Right now, about one-third of the site’s transactions involve someone from outside the United States, and the company’s new CEO is looking to open offices in countries such as Canada and Australia, where opportunities look particularly promising.

This move is part of a larger effort to expand the company that has included efforts such as versions of the site in French and German, new ways for sellers to advertise within the site and an iPhone app. So far, it has been paying off–this year, the site had its highest holiday sales in its history.

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    Over 4400 etsy shops temporarily closed their shops today, in silent protest of recent policies and actions by the leadership of etsy that many view as contrary to etsy’s original mission of supporting handcrafters and artisans.  For more information, visit protesty.com/