By Paul Feinberg
Vow To Be Chic, the Santa Monica-based designer bridesmaid dress rental startup founded by UCLA Anderson alumna Kelsey Doorey (’13), received $5 million in Series A funding last week. As noted in the company’s press release, Vow To Be Chic “gives millennial women the shopping experience and dream wedding that they desire while providing aspirational designer dresses at a fraction of the cost.”
The round includes existing investors Pritzker Group Venture Capital and Wavemaker Partners, and new investor Women’s Venture Capital Fund. The funds will be used to scale the business, improve technology systems and grow the team to enhance customer experience and support growing demand.
“Men have been winning for decades by renting tuxes while women purchased expensive dresses that they only wore once. I knew something had to change. Someone needed to solve the ‘27 Dresses’ problem,” says Vow To Be Chic CEO and founder Doorey. “With these funds, we are excited to continue expanding our offering so that women have a superior option when planning their weddings.”
Doorey, whose company was featured on NBC’s Shark Tank and HBO’s Girls, won the Knapp Venture Competition in 2013, earning $15,000, and also received additional funding from two of the Knapp judges. She says that the Knapp competition “literally changed my life in one night.”
In 2015, Doorey hired the most Anderson interns of any company and also hired Hannah Stephens (’15) for a full-time position.