Conjure, the furniture rental service curated by designer artisans formerly operating as Mobley, announced its official launch out of stealth as well as $9 million in seed funding led by Pillar VC (led by Russ Willcox, former Co-Founder of E-Ink), RiverPark Ventures (founded by Andy Appelbaum, Co-Founder of Seamless), and CoVenture. After testing the concept and proving demand under the Mobley name, Conjure’s recent raise showcases that it has built a scalable business poised for success, growth, and leading the furniture rental industry. Conjure plans to utilize its funding to further expand its collection of high-quality home furniture and accessories, broaden its consumer base, hire more designers and artists, expand delivery outside of the five New York boroughs and launch its industry-first Bazaar, marketing unique and collectible home accessories.
On a mission to help give consumers access to designer-curated collections at an affordable price and on a flexible schedule, Conjure allows homes to evolve as frequently as its occupant’s tastes, needs, and preferences shift. With 9.8 million tons of furniture ending up in landfills every year, the high costs of storing furniture and the landscape of millennial migration highlights the need for a modernized rental service. Its simple user interface and partnerships with amazing curators positions Conjure to lead among other more traditional furniture renters and make furniture more sustainable, accessible, and affordable for consumers by bringing stunning pieces to any home with its flexible leasing model. Conjure offers furniture and home accessory rental leases for 3-12 months and can bring any unfurnished living room, dining room, bedroom or office to life with free assembly and delivery.
Conjure was created first and foremost with renters in mind, specifically in New York City where there are approximately 5.4 million renters. Its model has seen immense interest, with more and more organic customers referring friends and family to the platform. In the past two years alone, it has seen more than 7.6x revenue growth.
“People love the Conjure experience because it takes away all of the stressful parts of furnishing a room,” said Russ Wilcox, Partner at Pillar VC and Co-Founder of E Ink. “As a rental business model, the key to Conjure is that it pools the purchasing power of its customers—so the more people sign up, the better it gets for everyone. We see Conjure filling an essential and overlooked gap in the retail industry and are thrilled to invest in this latest seed round.”
Conjure is also an industry pioneer for affordable design, as it partnered with artisans to create curated collections for each room in the home. This means that at the click of a button, users can furnish their entire bedroom, dining room, living room, or office space with ease.Conjure worked closely with Adam Charlap Hyman, a highly recognized New York based architect and RISD alumni to bring the first collection to life. After studying the different architectural and cultural evolution of New York neighborhoods (West Village, East Village, Tribeca, and Soho) and scouring for high-quality, durable, and unique pieces, Conjure launched pre curated collections inspired by these iconic neighborhoods that offer a variety of style and design choices. Additionally, Conjure was the first in the furniture rental industry to launch its innovative concept of “flexible ownership.” At the end of each lease, renters have flexibility in terms of what they want to do next, whether that is using their transferable equity to trade-in and swap out furniture pieces or purchase items outright for the fair retail price. Conjure brings a huge level of transparency to customers so they always have flexibility in their leases.
“We started with a goal of bridging the gap between the joy of having the home design we dream of and the immense time and investment it takes to make that happen,” said Daniel Ramirez, CEO & co-founder of Conjure. “People’s homes should be allowed to evolve in tandem with their personality and style, and the process of moving shouldn’t be an expensive and tiring experience. New Yorkers are constantly relocating, so it’s necessary to have a simple way to allow customers to manifest their personality into their new space. As demand increases, we’re excited to grow with our customers under a new brand with fresh designs and continue to bring forth the magic out of every home.”
Despite the uncertainty and stress of COVID-19, Conjure has only seen increased demand for its services. Now more than ever, people are in their homes, and while using their space for both recreation and work, it is important to have a beautiful residence. Conjure has filled the need for a reliable and safe way to furnish an apartment, and since March 2020 alone, has seen an 3.8x increase in monthly signups. In 2021 and beyond, renters will continue to need to find a way to maintain ease and flexibility with design and aesthetic — without sacrificing one for the other.
“Millennials are delaying home ownership and moving an average of 12 times before buying a home,” said Andy Appelbaum, Managing Partner at RiverPark Ventures. “The popularity of startups like Airbnb, Turo, and Rent the Runway have demonstrated consumer willingness to rent essentials across a number of categories. Conjure provides a high quality, low cost solution in what is already a $12B rental furniture market.”
“At CoVenture, we seek companies that meet burgeoning consumer demands,” said Brian Harwitt, Principal at CoVenture. “The modern renter wants their homes to be chic, without sacrificing the flexibility of relocation or evolving preferences. Conjure is the only brand meeting those needs while providing designer products, ownership options, as well as the new Bazaar marketplace. We look forward to continuing to support Conjure as they rebrand and expand their products and services.”
To continue building its arsenal of designer furniture offerings, Conjure will also launch a section of its website called the Bazaar. The new marketplace will host an assemblage of limited-edition home accessories and small furniture pieces unique to each spotlighted designer to help consumers complete their home with collectibles such as art, rugs, curtains, wallpaper, sheets, coffee tables, books, and more. In partnership with up-and-coming brands such as Wallpaper Projects, Taschen, and Neighborhood Goods, this new marketplace will provide a distinctive user experience exclusive to the Conjure brand.
For more information, visit www.conjure.co.
ABOUT CONJURE: Conjure, a member of the inaugural cohort for the Harvard accelerator and Venture Crush 12th Vintage Cohort, sought to spread the idea that home isn’t a specific place, it’s a representation of who you once were and became throughout each move. A home is a home because it blurs the line between the self and the surroundings, and challenges that line we try to draw between who we are and where we are. Conjure believes that our space is a reflection of ourselves, made from the inside out. So we make it easy for you to build a home that evolves. We invite top designers to curate furniture and beautiful home accessories to match your newfound styles, moods, and passions. We lease on your terms, so you’re free to change up your home’s vibe and location as often as you please. And we give you the power to make a place for yourself wherever, whenever. www.conjure.co
ABOUT PILLAR: Pillar VC is a seed-stage venture firm in Boston co-founded by 22 CEOs, including the leaders of DraftKings, Ginkgo Bioworks, Wayfair and Tripadvisor. We’re the first-capital-in for unstoppable founders. Almost half the companies we’ve backed are university spinouts, and our investments include PillPack, Desktop Metal, Kuebix, Algorand, Asimov and PathAI, among others. We believe VC doesn’t have to be the dark side, that the strongest relationships start from a position of trust. We align with founders by providing resources and support, and by offering to buy common stock –– the very same type of stock founders own.
ABOUT RIVERPARK VENTURES: RiverPark Ventures is an early stage venture capital fund, founded by entrepreneurs to invest in entrepreneurs. We focus on high-growth, disruptive businesses with innovative products and services that have a proven business model in sectors where we believe the upside is enormous. Additionally, as operators, we understand the challenges of building a business, and we work with our companies to add value by applying our insight from two decades of first-hand execution and investment experience along with a deep and wide network of relationships. RiverPark Ventures is part of the RiverPark Funds group.
ABOUT COVENTURE: Headquartered in New York, CoVenture is an asset manager focused on investing across the capital stack of technology companies. The firm’s unique capital base allows it to invest in early-stage companies, new and emerging assets, and in special situations – both in the form of debt and equity capital. The investment in Conjure was led by CoVenture’s Credit Opportunities group.