Sometimes new and hot products hit the stores and sell out in record time. That’s what gave Kola Tytler the motivation to start a footwear resale company. A sneaker fanatic himself, he wanted to give others like him an opportunity to own limited-editions. He also wanted to explore the streetwear market and that’s how Dropout was born.
Dropout is an Italy-based business that specializes in the sale of authentic limited edition sneakers and streetwear. The business was launched in 2018 and has grown by leaps and bounds for the past 3 years.
Its flagship store is located in the center of Milan and was an instant hit since it opened its doors. It saw 1000+ people on the opening weekend alone and has since welcomed 50,000+ visitors from all over the world.
The business also has an equally successful ecommerce store. The store, dropoutmilano.com, has seen millions of visitors and thousands of sales. Dropout offers free delivery for all products across the E.U. The company guarantees 100% authenticity of the products.
Kola Tytler is one of the co-founders and is the CEO of the company. He divides his time between running Dropout and his job at the NHS as a medical doctor. Kola is also an MBA student and an entrepreneur with other business interests. The founding team also includes Andrea Canziani, Federico Pasquetti, and Stefano Zeppieri who is a software engineer.
Although the footwear industry in Italy is highly competitive, the team has managed to develop software that has kept the company at the top of the industry. The software, HYPEAnalyzer, is covered by a commercial patent in Italy. The team uses it to run important facets of the business.
HypeAnalyzer is primarily a technical analysis program. The team uses it to analyze the secondary streetwear market and make business decisions. The software tracks the performance of different sneakers in the market making it easy for the team to predict the ones with the greatest potential.
The Dropout team also uses HypeAnalyzer to set the pricing and marketing strategies. It’s also used to track the consignment rates and discounts on products. In the coming days, the team plans to scale the software for other uses in the retail and ecommerce spaces. They are currently studying the creation of a portal for investment in sneakers as alternative assets.
Since its inception, the company has run on the funds originally raised by its founders. However, they recently started expansion plans for various aspects of the business and decided to increase their visibility to other parts of the world. They hosted an equity crowdfunding campaign in October 2021 and managed to attract a sizable number of investors.
The campaign saw the participation of 2 Italian venture capitalists and 130+ retail investors from different parts of the world. Initially, the campaign was scheduled to run for 62 days to raise €500k but they managed to surpass that goal in 6 days. The campaign raised €750k in total.
The funds raised will be used to open a new Dropout retail store and several temporary locations in Italy. They will also be used to improve the company’s ecommerce store and further development of the HypeAnalyzer software.