I am proud to announce a €10 million investment that establishes Spreadshirt at a new stage: we’ve outgrown venture financing and are on to growth financing! For those of you not wrapped up in financing stages of companies, this is like leaving your parents’ home after high school, and heading off to college — paid for with loans your parents didn’t co-sign.

Our decision was similar to that of a college decision. First, we had to decide to go to college. Spreadshirt has strong business fundamentals, including great growth. We’ve been investing profits back into the business. An example: we have 50 more people working for us now than we did this time last year. (I’m proud we’ve been able to create these jobs in this economy.) We discussed the option of moving forward without additional financing. As with college, we decided it was best for our future to take a second round of financing to build a stronger company.

Next, we had to decide which college. There is no guide to financing, like Peterson’s for colleges. We were lucky to have Accel, our current investor to help us find the right partner. We defined three main criteria: growth stage investors, strong European and US presence, and complementary network and experience to ours and Accel’s. Kennet Partners fit this, and more. Max Bleyleben and the Kennet team showed us a partnership mentality from the beginning. One example: one of their first steps was to come to our HQ and production facility in Leipzig, Germany.

Max will join Spreadshirt’s board, and has already attended his first board meeting, just 2 days after we closed the investment. He contributed as if he was a long-time member, fitting right into the team, and providing the thoughtful judgment he shows on his blog, Technofile Europe. He has strong business experience across Europe, and speaks four languages fluently — German, Spanish, French and English.

I could talk about Max’s business credentials, but you know what is important to me… does he get our customer, and what they want to accomplish? Well, he proved to me that he did. For Valentine’s Day, he ordered a Spreadshirt hoodie for his wife. It had a heart on it with a message below it that said, “Fire it up!” Max gets us, and we are lucky to get him and Kennet on board!

And if that wasn’t enough good news to share, I also get to add that Accel showed their continued support for our business and invested in this round as well. When I joined Spreadshirt, I had not worked with Accel. I asked around about them, and heard nothing but positive reviews from entrepreneurs. (I’m generally somewhat suspicious of VCs.) After working with them, I cannot say enough good things about working with Accel, and our partner, Harry Nelis.

This investment would not have been possible without the work and dedication of our founders, Lukasz Gadowski and Matthias Spiess, our motivated and smart management team, and our creative and hard working execution team. I am grateful today and each day for all they do to grow Spreadshirt and me!

Please watch Max’s blog and Gründerszene (German) tomorrow for more. I know you’ll enjoy reading these perspectives. After that (and after my head clears a bit from the pneumonia-curing drugs), I’ll share a bit more about Spreadshirt moving forward.

What’s on my shirt today?

    It’s kind of fun
    to do the impossible
    — Walt Disney

P.S. OK, I have to tell you. It’s an up round. Yep, in this economy. I ❤ Spreadshirt!

31 thoughts on “

  1. Tom Musinguzi says:

    Hello Jana,

    Thanks for your post and sure you’ll get well soon!!

    I am an African creative artist, living in Uganda, and I make designs which I print on t shirts and then wait for customers to buy.

    However, I would like to expand and reach a wider market through spreadshirt.com.

    Now, I am wondering if you can make it possible for me, in Africa, to sell on the marketplace. My work is more, unique, more African.

    Thanks a lot for the great innovation and creativity.

    Looking forward to hearing from.

    Tom I. Musinguzi
    Cell; +256772470527

  2. Congratulations to Jana and the Spreadshirt team!

    Hope this brings more great things from you guys in the future.

    I remember first finding about spreadshirt germany when it first launched (mmmmm…flock), signing up, trying to get a friend in Germany to order a product for me, and then *wishing* you guys would come to the US.

    Keep making great moves!

  3. Sincere congratulations from a new partner.
    it’s great to see what cool ideas and hard work can bring.

    I don’t know if this is the place for suggestions, but I think that investing more in the “organic” and “ethic” clothes market can be a great move, this is the future in my opinion.

  4. Fernando says:

    Hello Jana,

    very inspirational! I love the idea behind spreadshirt and I would like to bring it to Brazil. How can we do that?
    The economy is strong, growing and such an idea will be a great success


  5. “Jeff Bennett | March 30th, 2009 at 5:04 amCongrats Jana and the Spreadshirt team. Great to see a fellow Lycosian on the move. Go go go is what I tell my team everyday. You are living it.”
    Something I doubt …

  6. That’s great but what about investing in a proper customer service? Spreadshirt lacks the basic understanding of good business practices and is bound to alienate the very people who make the company successful. I think an audit would be welcome. You can’t run this type of business like a school club or a fan forum.

  7. У Фаулера и Мэри был сын – единственный внук Дормэса,- красивый маленький Дэвид, который в свои восемь лет был робким, одаренным воображением, нежным ребенком с такими громадными печальными глазами и такими рыжевато-золотистыми волосами, что его портрет был бы вполне на месте на выставке в Национальной академии или даже на обложке женского журнала с 2,5-миллионным тиражом. скачать реферат на тему германия В голове Блуждают мысли сонные, витые. У нее было две ноги, чтобы скользить по льду, — у лошади было в два раза больше ног для скольжения.
    И тогда возникает ожидание желания, желания как-то избыть тишину, встряхнуть сыпучую её массу, взвеять её пепел — ожидание, полное тишины.

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