Global investment group Eurazeo invested $53 million in Pangaea Holdings for a minority investment in the Los Angeles e-commerce company rooted in creating premium men’s personal care brands.
The investment is part of a larger $68 million round that includes $15 million in Series B funding from a group of backers including Unilever Ventures and GPO Fund and existing investors Base10 Partners and Gradient Ventures. This brings the company’s total funds raised to $87 million since the company was founded by Richard Hong and Darwish Gani in 2018.
Harlem Capital’s Henri Pierre-Jacques invested in both Pangaea’s seed round in 2019 and Series A in 2020. He’s known Gani since college and worked with Hong over the past two years, calling the pair “one of the most data-driven and founder market fits I have seen.”
“At the seed stage, the business was already a seven-figure business and has continued to see astonishing growth,” he added. “Pangaea, to date, has been a brand incubator, but post the Series B will expand to be a vertically integrated e-commerce platform for other brands. We are even more excited for this next phase of their growth.”
Hong started Pangaea with the launch of men’s skincare brand Lumin that contains natural Korean-based formulations. In fact, he was among a group of people living together in an apartment using Korean beauty products and hiding it from their roommates, Gani told TechCrunch.
Gani later joined Hong as a co-founder to scale the business, as they realized there was a bigger opportunity for global e-commerce.
“Men are actually into skincare, but not as comfortable talking about it,” Gani said. “For Richard, he came from a place where skincare was more culturally accepted. His idea was to provide high-quality products, but presented in a way that people can understand their use and help them to form a habit.”
Pangaea ended up developing proprietary infrastructure, including warehousing, payments and shipping, as a holding company to grow and scale direct-to-consumer brands. It’s latest brand, Meridian, offering grooming products, launched in 2020. Products are now selling in more than 70 countries.
Though headquartered in Los Angeles, the company is basically remote, with more than 300 employees across its major hubs in LA, Lagos, Nigeria, Singapore and Europe.
The company is already cash flow positive, and the new funding will enable Pangaea to round out leadership roles in its brands and reach the next stage of growth with the goal of being “omnichannel male megabrands,” Gani said. The company is also investing in additional product categories, new brands and potentially licensing its proprietary software.
Gani said he is excited to work with Eurazeo, which he referred to as “experts in building and scaling consumer brands.” The firm will work with Pangaea to continue developing the Lumin and Meridian brands and accelerate its international expansion.
Jill Granoff, Eurazeo’s managing partner and brands CEO, said in a written statement that the company “is well-positioned for future growth.”
“Richard and Darwish have launched a platform and products that address a significant need in an attractive, growing market,” Granoff added. “The team has achieved impressive results in a short period of time across geographies and categories, demonstrating strong product appeal to global consumers. They have also built a highly scalable technology that can support future brand development.”
It may not be as glamorous as D2C, but beauty tech is big money