This fine-art shipping startup counts Sotheby’s and Christie’s among its customers. We got an exclusive look at the 18-slide pitch deck Convelio used to raise $35 million.
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- Convelio raised $35 million from Forestay and Mundi Ventures, which also backed Klarna.
- The fine-art shipping startup said its technology made it faster and cheaper to ship items globally.
- We got an exclusive look at the 18-slide pitch deck it used to raise a Series B.
Convelio, a shipping and logistics startup for the fine-art market, has raised $35 million in a Series B round.
The French company, which was founded in Paris in 2017, uses algorithms to offer competitive shipping costs to auction houses, galleries, and private art collectors looking to move art across the globe.
The startup said it took seconds for customers to get a quote, unlike the industry standard of one to five days. Its algorithm crunches data from the entire logistics chain and whittles the price down to 46% cheaper than competitors, the company said.
Traditionally, quote companies would have to manually “call, fax, and email” each supply-chain partner to get prices, then add them together to present to the customer.
A “fairly standard” piece of art is 100 cm by 70 cm. Edouard Gouin, a cofounder of Convelio, said the company typically priced this at around 1,796 euros ($1,959), while the average competitor quote would be 3,402 euros ($3,711).
The biggest reason for the difference, the company said, was that Convelio removed as many intermediaries as possible, such as brokers, agents, and last-mile-delivery providers. The company relies on third-party partners, as it doesn’t have its own logistics services.
Cofounder Clément Ouizille said fine art was underserved by logistics providers because it wasn’t standardized, meaning it didn’t scale well.
“This market is complex because you’re shipping nonstandard, fragile, high-value goods,” he said. “For other startups entering the logistics space, it is much easier because they’re shipping pallets or containers.”
The startup deals with packaging, insurance, customs, and real-time tracking. It offers a choice of quotes and delivery packages, depending on the item and timeframe, and it ships everything from chairs to “a 5 million euro painting with full airport supervision.”
Convelio boasts global art-market giants Christie’s, Sotheby’s, and Phillips among its customers.
Gouin said that in addition to cheaper and faster quotes, Convelio’s usability set it apart. This was driven by the increased interest in fine art shown by younger generations, who expected a digital-first experience, Gouin said.
The 200-person strong startup has offices in Paris, New York, and London. It intends to use the fresh cash to bolster head count to 320 by the end of 2022. Convelio is building out its US operations in particular and plans to grow it from 30 to 70.
Capital would also be poured into its logistics technology, customer service, and sustainability strategy. The cofounders are looking to reduce the company’s emissions where possible and to incorporate this into the quotes given to customers, so customers know the effects of their shipments on the climate.
The Series B was led by Forestay, a venture-capital firm in the UK and Switzerland, with participation from Klarna-backers Mundi Ventures, The European Investment Fund, and existing investors Acton Capital and Global Founders Capital.
Below, check out the 18-slide redacted pitch deck that Convelio used to raise the fresh funds.