There is room for small business to flourish, even in the worst of economic times. Because men who work on Wall Street will always want their butts to look good — and they will put good money toward it, especially when their ilk are making the pants. Bonobos started by selling pants with a curved waistband and strategically placed darts designed to flatter men’s rears, and has since expanded to offer a complete range of apparel and boat shoes (the founders are two dudes who roomed together at Stanford). Having previously raised $7.75 million in angel funding, they just raised $18.5 million through venture capital firms Lightspeed Venture Partners and Accel Partners.
Jeremy Liew from Lightspeed has previously led investments in Kim Kardashian’s ShoeDazzle, which helped turn him onto the thrills and moneymaking potential of e-commerce. One out of five pairs of Bonobos pants are sold in Manhattan, which remains Bonobos’s biggest market.
Although the first pair of Bonobos pants was sewn in Silicon Valley, the company’s success is rooted in Wall Street. The pants have found a cult following among young finance types who want something between the traditional Brooks Brothers cut and the thigh-hugging, slim-fit European style.
Bonobos: The pants that are juuuuust gay enough.
Bonobos, a Web Retailer, Raises $18.5 Million [DealBook/NYT]