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Made is opening its biggest showroom in Paris to diversify its sales

TechCrunch TechCrunch 29/06/2016 Romain Dillet

British startup Made is opening its largest showroom to date in Paris tomorrow. Made is a sort of Everlane for furniture. The company tries to cut as many middlemen as possible to provide good looking furniture at affordable prices.

And yet, 60 percent of its sales still happen in the U.K. The company is now heavily focusing on international expansion. And this new showroom is a great example of that.

Located in the second arrondissement, Made is re-using the same formula as in its other showrooms. Visitors will get to see some of Made’s products, try seating in an armchair, look at a lamp and more. But when it comes to buying things, you’ll have to go to the company’s website.

This way, Made doesn’t have to handle inventory. And carrying a heavy desk made out of a single piece of wood from the center of Paris is complicated anyway. It’s better to have someone show up in your living room a few weeks later.

While I haven’t seen the showroom yet, it’s spread over two levels and quite big (840 m² in total). The showroom will also work with contemporary florist Ikebanart and Café Coutume so that it’s not just about furniture.

Made works with designers and manufacturers to compress costs as much as possible. And Made tries to book orders before even manufacturing something so that it doesn’t have to store furniture.

The company raised $60 million from Partech and Fidelity last year. It now has 240 employees and handles hundreds of thousands of sales per year.

In many ways, Made is the anti-Ikea. The startup wants you to think about what you want for your living room. And you’ll have to be patient and wait for the delivery person at your door. With Ikea, you can simply rent a car and go to the store right after moving in to buy everything you need for your apartment. You’ll also probably hate yourself because you can’t find the last screw.

Made is more expensive and more durable. And let’s be honest, it looks a lot better. Now that e-commerce is slowly becoming the norm, I wouldn’t be surprised if ready-to-assemble furniture fades away in favor of online stores like Made.

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