The things we wear are meant to help us embrace, explore and express ourselves. But too often, fashion retail is about dividing us into gendered sections, conquering our curiosity and limiting our potential, by forcing us into predetermined molds.
Why do we have to identify with one side or the other? Why can’t we be both?
Our gender-free flagship store launched in the NoHo neighborhood of Manhattan earlier this year. It’s quickly become a community hub for people to stop, shop and engage. Global buzz and growing sales have proved the concept. Over the next 18 months we’re committing to spreading the love by opening community stores in other strategic North American markets and building a phluid online presence that helps people throughout the world express themselves from the inside out.
A growing inventory of 50+ brands plus a budding private label offering. We’ve got apparel, accessories, gifts and an in-store cafe. We provide a platform for forward-thinking discussion and activism through weekly events and artist residencies.
Right now, our website is primarily a forum to welcome LGBTQA+ people and allies. It promotes style, culture and resources to challenge boundaries with humanity. We do also have a low-key online store which is focused on our private label offerings and selected brands.
The Phluid Project is the world’s first gender-free store - we’ve trademarked that. Our first months have been about building awareness and proving people care. Job done. Now we’re all about growing sales. Our in-store metrics are pointing up, and our first holiday season is just around the corner. The next step is serious online growth.
Our private label offerings stand side-by-side with multiple curated brands. We sell apparel, accessories, shoes, home decor, books, food & beverage, cosmetics and fragrance. Our accessible price points range from $25-500.
We’re planning to grow our business into three primary channels:
$143B Gen Z spending potential by 2020 including allowances, earned wages and gifts
Our strategy is to foster and serve the market for gender neutral clothing through influential thought leadership, creatively curated, accessibly-priced fashion and accessories, and making a gathering space for our kind of people to embrace, explore and express.
We’re the world’s first gender-free store - it’s the core of our identity. And, it’s not all about us. We’re a community hub designed to promote fellow gender-neutral labels and push other brands that didn’t even know they could be gender free. One of our core principles is accessibility - and that’s always reflected in our pricing. We’re not here to one-up other players in this brave new space - we’re more inclined to take stock, collaborate and listen.
It all starts here at Republic. Rob personally invested nearly $600K to kick things off. The Phluid Project has obtained a $300K business credit card loan and has $200K cash in the bank. Conversations about potential future funding are underway with high profile individuals in the LGBTQA+ community.
Most of our raise will go toward building out our ecommerce business. The rest will boost our content, marketing and private label offerings and cover increased overhead.
The Phluid Project will build on our first mover advantage, establish our position as thought leaders and create new revenue streams by curating multi-channel content focused on inspiring individuals across the globe.
Our strategy is designed to grow our ecommerce offerings from 2% of today’s revenues to 59% in Y5. Overall revenues are projected to surge from an estimated $1M in Y1 to $50M by Y5.
Rob Smith | Founder & CEO
Rob’s spent 30 years orchestrating multi-billion dollar business lines through ecommerce, digital branding, marketing, and product development. He was Macy’s youngest ever VP, then their youngest ever EVP. He became Macy’s trusted General Merchandise Manager before moving on to EVP and GMM roles at Victoria’s Secret. He was Chief Product Officer for Haddad Brands - Nike, Levi’s Jordan, Hurley, Converse. He mentors numerous fashion brands and serves on the Board of Directors for Steve Madden Ltd. and Athlete Ally. He’s the Board Chair for Hetrick-Martin Institute which empowers, educates and advocates on behalf of LGBTQA+ youth. He facilitates their HMI Emery Awards. He’s raised $20-30M for non profits and politicians he believes in. He’s a graduate of Michigan State University.
The Phluid Project is supported and encouraged by a high-caliber advisory board that shares their expertise in founding, investment, marketing, e-commerce, and fashion.
Together we can celebrate what makes us different and cherish what makes us the same by creating a community that is profitable in every sense of the word. Thank you for your support.
The smallest investment amount that The Phluid Project is accepting.
The Phluid Project needs to reach their minimum funding goal before
the deadline. If they don’t, all investments will be refunded.
The Crowd SAFE is an agreement for future equity in the startup,
meaning that it can convert to equity in the future.
The Crowd SAFE is an agreement for future equity in the startup, meaning that it can convert to equity in the future.
$25,000 – $1,070,000
The Phluid Project needs to raise
before the deadline. The maximum amount The Phluid Project is willing
to raise is $1.07M.
I think this is a growing market and could create tremendous buzz. Think the CEOs experience is appropriate and nice to know he backs it with a personal investmentJohn WalshInvested 5 months ago
To support good people doing good things! Rob Smith has a lot of practice! I respect his vast business, retail, & fashion experience. He and his team are passionate about Phluid Project mission. Gives me another way to support the community.Dave DresdenInvested 4 months ago
Rob Smith has a history of tenacity and predicting the turn. More importantly, it is an honor to give my humble investment to a man that has shared so much of his time, energy and finances with others.Adam EvansInvested 4 months ago
I believe in Rob Smith and his vision! Rob is one of the most caring and giving people I know but also an amazing marketer and business man. Rob had the courage to recognize a huge market that is completely ignored. Getting in on this makes sense.Glenn PetersenInvested 4 months ago
Believe in the concept, ahead of it's time. Rob Smith starting a movementGraham CundickInvested 4 months ago
Rob, your commitment and passion for this project is evident and am so happy I can help be part of this important forward movement in a tiny way. XOAditi JoshiInvested 4 months ago
I invested because I love Rob Smith and believe in what he's doing. Always!Marc RiedelInvested 4 months ago
Because I love the store merchandising, I love the ethos and mission, I love the phluid staff, and I think there is a huge opportunity to scale this business through ecom and smartly located experiential retail locations across country.David PorzioInvested 4 months ago
I love everything about this business: the market insight, their operational excellence, the team, the founder. This business is going places.Matt PowellInvested 4 months ago
I invested because I strongly believe in The Phluid Project's mission, particularly the provision of community / events spaceNatasa BogunovicInvested 4 months ago
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