Pair Eyewear Inc. is set for a transformative journey with a significant $75 million funding infusion to bolster the production of its customizable eyewear and lay the foundation for international expansion.
This funding round is spearheaded by Prysm Capital, a leading venture firm, and is supported by prominent investors, including New Enterprise Associates, Javelin Venture Partners, and NFL star Christian McCaffrey, an early investor. This funding round catapults the company’s total funding to nearly $150 million.
The strategic vision of the management team involves deploying this capital to initiate global distribution, amplify its state-of-the-art manufacturing facilities, and establish a physical retail presence through strategic partnerships and shop-in-shops. Until now, Pair Eyewear’s acclaimed eyeglasses and sunglasses have been exclusively available through direct-to-consumer channels on their website.
Pair Eyewear burst onto the scene in 2017 with its groundbreaking top-frame system, which empowers wearers to seamlessly customize their frames by snapping on different styles. Customers can acquire the $60 base frame and personalize it with $25 add-ons, often released as limited-edition collections.
Co-founder Sophia Edelstein emphasized their ambitious expansion plans, stating, «We’re gearing up to establish a significant presence in numerous retail stores. Regardless of your location in the US and Canada, you should have the opportunity to experience Pair Eyewear up close.»
The eyewear industry has garnered substantial attention from investors, with Indian retailer Lenskart securing a remarkable $500 million investment from an Abu Dhabi sovereign wealth fund earlier this year. Pair Eyewear has also garnered support from a diverse array of celebrities, including basketball star D’Angelo Russell, fashion influencer Olivia Culpo, and actor Sterling K. Brown.
Over the past year, Pair Eyewear has made remarkable strides, with the establishment of two 20,000-square-foot manufacturing facilities in California, intensifying domestic production. The company’s workforce has expanded to approximately 160 employees, with a dedicated team of 90 professionals engaged in manufacturing. They are well on track to achieve sales of nearly 2 million of their top-frames in 2023.
While specific revenue figures remain undisclosed, the company disclosed a doubling of sales year-over-year and a steadfast journey towards profitability.
Pair Eyewear has inked pivotal partnerships with licensing partners, expanding their top-frame offerings into the realms of sports and entertainment. Collaborations with Marvel Entertainment, Sesame Street, and the National Basketball Association underscore their innovative approach. Their latest venture shifts the focus to the world of art, with strategic partnerships with the Van Gogh Museum and the Frida Kahlo brand.
Co-founder Nathan Kondamuri affirmed their unwavering commitment to further expanding into the celebrity and fashion realms in the years ahead.