Press

Europe’s leading online optician strengthens market position: Mister Spex receives 40 Million USD

January 8, 2015

US bank Goldman Sachs leads financing round

Europe’s leading online optician Mister Spex concludes its largest financing to date raising 40 Million USD in a round led by US investment bank Goldman Sachs with participation from existing investors including Scottish Equity Partners, XAnge and DN Capital. Funds will be used to support the Company’s domestic and international growth plans.

“The current round of financing is the best confirmation of our consistent and successful pioneering work in a highly attractive market,” says Dirk Graber, CEO and founder of Mister Spex. “With Goldman Sachs, we have found a world class investor who shares our vision for the Company and is the ideal partner to further advance our domestic and international expansion.”

“We have been impressed by the achievements of Mister Spex. The Company’s innovative business model, strong organic growth, and high-quality management team position it well for future success. We hope to assist the company to achieve its ambitions and create value for its customers and shareholders,” says Andrew Wolff, Managing Director and Head of Goldman Sachs Merchant Banking Division (“MBD”) for Europe, Middle East, Africa and co-Head of Asia. As part of the funding round, David Reis, Executive Director and Head of Technology Investments at Goldman Sachs MBD in Europe, will join the Advisory Board of Mister Spex.

The funds will be invested to further cement the market leadership of Mister Spex in Europe. “We also want to use the money to strengthen our logistics proposition and broaden our stationary opticians partner network,” said Dirk Graber.

Mister Spex has grown rapidly since its founding in 2007 and has established itself as the European online eyewear market leader. Dr. Mirko Caspar, co-managing director of Mister Spex stated: „The combination of Europe’s largest range of immediately available eyewear at fair prices, an appealing online shop, and an exceptional all-round service package define the success of Mister Spex. We will now build on our proven business model to further advance the online shopping experience for eyewear internationally.“

Andreas Olmes, PhD, Investment Director at HTGF: “We are very happy that the team of Mister Spex could attract the leading global investment banking firm Goldman Sachs. The internationalization can move on at full speed. The further acquired Swedish companies Lensstore and Loveeyewear are only the beginning of their buy and build strategy.”

About Mister Spex
Mister Spex GmbH is the largest online optician in Europe. Through their website, the company offers the most extensive assortment of contact lenses in Europe as well as top designer glasses and sunglasses directly available on attractive terms. The Mister Spex service team of trained opticians is available to advise customers by phone or email. The company has its own optician shop, where the final production and quality control of glasses takes place.

In 2013, Mister Spex achieved a turnover of 47 million Euros and currently has more than one million customers in Europe. The company employs over 300 people. Mister Spex has local sites active in Germany, Austria, France and Spain and in July 2013 also took over the Swedish online eyewear stores Lensstore and Loveyewear. As a result, Mister Spex has established itself as the leading online opticians in Europe.

Press contact:
Judith Schwarzer
Phone 0049-30-4431230-141
press@misterspex.co.uk
Mister Spex GmbH
Greifswalder Strasse 156
D-10409 Berlin / Germany

About Goldman Sachs MBD
Goldman Sachs MBD is the primary center for Goldman Sachs’ long-term principal investing activity, and Goldman Sachs has operated this business as an integral part of the firm for more than 25 years. The group invests in equity and credit across corporate, real estate and infrastructure strategies. Since 1986, the group has raised over 140 billion USD of capital to invest across a number of geographies, industries and transaction types. With eight offices in six countries around the world, MBD is one of the largest managers of private capital globally, offering deep expertise and long-standing relationships with companies, investors, entrepreneurs and financial intermediaries around the globe.

About High-Tech Gruenderfonds
High-Tech Gruenderfonds invests in young, high potential high-tech start-ups. The seed financing provided is designed to enable start-ups to take an idea through prototyping and to market launch. Typically, High-Tech Gruenderfonds invests EUR 500,000 in the seed stage, with the potential for up to a total of EUR 2 million per portfolio company in follow-on financing. Investors in this public/private partnership include the Federal Ministry of Economics and Energy, the KfW Banking Group, as well as strategic corporate investors including ALTANA, BASF, Bayer, B. Braun, Robert Bosch, CEWE, Daimler, Deutsche Post DHL, Deutsche Telekom, Evonik, Lanxess, media + more venture Beteiligungs GmbH & Co. KG, METRO, Qiagen, RWE Innogy, SAP, Tengelmann and Carl Zeiss. High-Tech Gruenderfonds has about EUR 576 million under management in two funds (EUR 272 million HTGF I, EUR 304 million HTGF II).

Contact:
Andreas Olmes, PhD
High-Tech Gründerfonds Management GmbH
Schlegelstraße 2 I 53113 Bonn
Tel + 49 228 – 82 30 01-00
Fax + 49 228 – 82 30 00-5
info@htgf.de
www.high-tech-gruenderfonds.de

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