Kim Kardashian wearing Skims shapewear and Skims logo
Source: Kim Kardashian West Facebook, Skims Twitter

Who Owns Skims? Shapewear Company Doubled Its Estimated Valuation

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Jan. 28 2022, Published 10:18 a.m. ET

Skims, a premier brand of shapewear and loungewear, has shot to a massive valuation in less than three years of operations. The company focuses on form-fitting shapewear and felt the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite the greater popularity of loose-fitting apparel, Skims still managed to succeed under the leadership of founder Kim Kardashian.

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Kardashian (she filed last month to officially divorce her husband Kanye West and drop the “West” from her name) launched Skims in September 2019—a few months before the COVID-19 pandemic shut many retailers down. The company just announced a new funding round of $240 million led by Lone Pine Capital.

Skims loungewear
Source: Skims Facebook

Skims focuses on undergarments and shapewear, but also sells relaxed-fitting loungewear.

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Kim Kardashian is the majority owner of Skims.

Kardashian is the person with ultimate creative control over Skims and its offerings. She's also the majority owner. She was called a billionaire by Forbes in the spring of 2021 thanks to valuations and her stakes in her beauty brand KKW and the shapewear line Skims.

Kim Kardashian and Emma Grede co-founded Skims.

According to CNBC, Kardashian co-founded Skims with Emma Grede. Grede also launched a size-inclusive brand, Good American, with Khloe Kardashian in 2016. Grede appeared on an episode of ABC’s Shark Tank and became the first Black female investor on the program.

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Grede is also a board member of 15 Percent Pledge, which is a nonprofit that urges retailers to reserve at least 15 percent of their shelf space to Black-owned businesses.

The initial name of the company, Kimono, drew criticism as being insensitive and a form of cultural appropriation. Although Kardashian said that it was merely a play on her own name and that she had “deep respect for the significance of the kimono in Japanese culture,” she changed the name to Skims.

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Emma and Jens Grede
Source: Getty

Emma and Jens Grede are deeply involved in Skims as co-founder and co-majority owner.

Skims' valuation doubled after the latest funding round.

Skims, which isn't publicly traded, raised $154 million in April 2021, which gave the company an estimated valuation of $1.6 billion, according to Kardashian. She remained its largest shareholder following that round, with business partner Jens Grede (spouse of co-founder Emma Grede) controlling the majority of Skims.

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This week, a new funding round led by Lone Pine Capital, a hedge fund, doubled the company’s valuation to $3.2 billion. The injection of $240 million in new funding included investors D1 Capital Partners and existing investors Thrive Capital, Alliance Consumer Growth, and Imaginary Ventures.

Kim Kardashian has other successful businesses and investments.

Although Kardashian got her start through her famous family and Keeping Up With the Kardashians, she has become a businesswoman in her own right. As the founder of KKW Beauty, a cosmetics and fragrance line, Kardashian sold a 20 percent stake of that company in 2021 to Coty for $200 million.

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Some sources say that Kardashian intends to rebrand and relaunch the company in 2022 under the name SKKN, likely because she's distancing herself from the “West” in her former married name.

Kardashian’s investments now extend to a partnership between Skims and Fendi—the Italian luxury brand owned by LVMH. The Wall Street Journal reported last fall that the Fendi x Skims ready-to-wear apparel collection was launching. Linking the nearly century-old Fendi brand to the modern fan base of Kardashian could be profitable.

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