This significant new investment follows 18 months of dynamic growth from Appear Here, which has facilitated over 500 short-terms lets in the last 12 months and now has over 600 properties available to hire at prime locations across the United Kingdom.
Appear Here was founded in 2012 by Ross Bailey, a 22-year-old entrepreneur who started out with his own pop-up shop on Carnaby Street, selling limited edition T-shirts to celebrate the Queen’s Jubilee. Now Appear Here makes space available in major UK cities and towns – including London, Manchester, Leeds, Liverpool, Birmingham, Glasgow and Edinburgh– and has worked with brands including Marc Jacobs, Google, Diageo, Jamie Oliver, Moleskine, Net-a-Porter and the Science Museum, as well as start-ups such as Black Sheep Coffee, Paper London and Spoon Cereals.
Ross Bailey said: “We’re delighted that Balderton have come on board with this major round of funding. The investment enables international expansion in 2015, and also further investment in our customer service: we have already developed five-star service for customers – including a concierge service, and online contracts and payments, which make it even easier for people to turn their ideas into reality.”
Mark Evans of Balderton said: “Appear Here is a simple idea which lets brands and entrepreneurs thrive and allows landlords to make the most profitable use of their space. The marketplace for retail space is ripe for a digitally-led overhaul and Appear Here are way ahead of any would-be competitors. Their technology, service, understanding of the market and attention to detail is extremely impressive.”
Eight out of the UK’s ten biggest retail landlords have now signed exclusive deals with Appear Here for marketing their space, including British Land, Land Securities and Hammerson.
Earlier this year Appear Here signed a deal with TfL to market space in Underground stations, which has seen major brands and imaginative business setting up for business in Old Street station and others. As well as traditional street shop space in prestigious locations, Appear Here has available spaces in shopping centres in Bath, Birmingham, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Leeds, Liverpool, London and Manchester, rooftops, markets and galleries. Over the last 12 months, Appear Here has seen the number of properties listed increase 200% to over 600 sites with over 10,000 brands now searching the database at any one time, up from 3000 in 2013.
Mark Evans, Partner at Balderton, will be joining the board of Appear Here. Existing investors MMC, Forward and Meyer Bergman also took part in the round, which follows on from a £1m fundraising in November 2013.
Ed Foy, Founder of PRESS London, the Californian-derived cold pressed juice bar chain, said: “When we first launched PRESS we wanted to prove our concept worked before scaling up. We used Appear Here to book a space in Old Street Station and became one of their first pop-up tenants in the underground. The best part was selling out within two hours of opening. Following the pop-up’s success we opened our Soho store, and are now opening a full counter in Selfridges plus two more locations in the New Year, including another underground station.