An Interactive Home Design Platform
WeLivv is targeting the $500 billion U.S. home decor market.
Its platform creates a personalized, interactive shopping experience for design professionals and individual consumers. Shoppers can view more than 4 million interior design photos, discover new furniture brands, and purchase high-end products all on the same platform.
By 2021, the e-commerce market for home furnishings is expected to increase 72%, representing a $62 billion opportunity. WeLivv is aiming to capture this growth.
The company is led by Andrew Christodoulides. Andrew started his first business in his parents’ basement with just $500, and eventually sold it for millions. He also started a home decor e-commerce website, Original Pad, which quickly grew to $4 million in annual sales.
WeLivv was created to solve a simple yet common problem: shopping for furniture online is very challenging. This is because products online, especially mid- to higher-end items, are often presented without context.
For example, on e-commerce websites, shoppers tend to rely on an item’s price to judge its quality.
Meanwhile, they can see plenty of home furnishings in natural settings in digital publications like Architectural Digest, as well as social media platforms like Pinterest and Instagram. But these rarely contain information about an item’s price. Furthermore, shoppers typically can’t purchase items they like directly from these pictures.
As a result of these problems only 8% of mid- to higher-end products are purchased online. This forces e-commerce retailers to compete for a small group of shoppers, and spend heavily to attract customers.
WeLivv is disrupting this market with its “all-in-one” design platform. Here’s how it works:
The platform combines Artificial Intelligence-based interactive search with an innovative user design experience.
Shoppers can search by item, room, or style. They can also receive “smart” suggestions to narrow down their search for a specific product.
Once they’ve found an item, shoppers can view product details, browse similar interior design spaces that feature the product, learn about the product’s designer, and even purchase it through WeLivv’s marketplace Model. The company earns a 30% to 50% commission on each item sold.
• Helps product creators increase their brand awareness, demonstrate their product’s function, and conduct their own market research.
• Helps interior designers get recognized for their work as users view their spaces.
• And helps consumers generate design ideas, find products, and get introduced to professional designers.
WeLivv launched a beta version of its platform in July 2017. The platform has an estimated 4 million interior design photos featuring the work of 8,000 designers. Based on the beta, 65% of designers contacted enrolled on the platform, and 80% of those converted to paying customers within 1 year.
More than 40,000 products are available for purchase through WeLivv. The company has partnerships with some of the top home furnishings brands, including Vitra, Kartell, Artemide, and Moooi. WeLivv is projecting to generate $13 million in revenue in 2019.
With funds raised, the company will officially launch its platform, and aim to offer 250,000 products for sale.
Andrew is a serial entrepreneur who's founded three businesses over his 19-year career.
He started his first company in the basement of his parents’ house with only $500, and later sold it for more than $3 million.
He launched a home décor e-commerce website called Original Pad, and grew the company to more than $4 million in annual revenue within five years. In addition, he co-founded Gaga Group, another e-commerce platform focused on home goods.
Andrew studied at St. John’s University.
Jose spent more than three years as an information technology consultant at Product Design Group, a New York-based design company.
In addition, he worked in the operations and technology support department at Acena, a telecommunications company.
He earned an Associate’s degree in Computer Engineering Technology from Lincoln Technical Institute.
Before joining the team at WeLivv, Chris worked with his brother, Andrew, at Original Pad. He served as the company’s Director of Operations for six years.
He previously owned a grooming and sales company for pets.
Prior to WeLivv, Dmitriy was a software developer — for himself, as well as for SIFTLYnow, a staffing and recruiting company.
He studied software development at the Professional College of Information Technology.