Every time we turn our heads, there’s a new Uber or Airbnb clone. There’s the Uber for helicopters, chefs and planes, as well as Airbnb-style apps for dogs, boats, cars, clothes and private jets. But another startup model is pulling more and more VC dollars away from sharing economy copy-cats and sexting apps. Call it the Bonobos-for-everything, or maybe the Warby-for-everything if you’re not into J Crew-style chinos.
As of this morning, Jack Erwin, a startup that makes mens’ shoes that lean a bit dressy, has closed a $6 million dollar round led by industry giant Brown Shoe. The NYC Soho-based company sells hand-made shoes from Spain, but can offer them cheaper than more established brands by going direct-to-consumer, cutting out middlemen, brands and retailers who jack up the prices. An analogous company would be Brooklyn-based Greats, which sells casual streetwear shoes through a nearly indistinguishable business model. Read More