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Legal 500, 2022

Harbottle & Lewis advises Antler on investment in Heat

18 January 2022

Harbottle & Lewis has advised venture capital firm Antler on its lead investment into luxury mystery box platform Heat.

The investment was part of a $5million seed funding round in which LVMH Luxury Ventures also participated.

Other strategic angel investors include Stefano Rosso, board member at OTB; the Hermès family; Oliver Merkel from (Flink); and Spotify’s Sven Ahrens.

Launched in 2019 by Gen Z founders Joe Wilkinson and Mario Maher, Heat allows luxury brands to monetise unsold inventory via desirable and buzzy drops of surprise merchandise. The platform purchases unsold inventory from more than 60 luxury brand partners including Off-White, Casablanca and Palm Angels to curate its mystery boxes of clothing and accessories, sold in hyped drops on Instagram and YouTube to thousands of Gen Z fashion fans.

With the new funding, Heat is hoping to build out its brand roster and become a Gen Z e-commerce leader across mystery boxes and retail, using gamification and AI to personalise the retail experience and box curation. LVMH’s brands are also expected to come on board.

Heat has more than 600,000 followers on Instagram and posts aspirational streetwear content to hype impending drops. At launch, the brand targeted the Gen Z YouTube community to build its following with popular unboxing videos, a format popularised by the gaming community. Heat collaborated with e-sports organisation FaZe Clan in September 2020.

Tony Littner, head of Harbottle’s Venture Capital Group, advised Antler on the transaction together with Corporate associate Iona Jones and Employment senior associate Sarah Verrecchia.

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