- Former Snap chief strategy officer Imran Khan’s e-commerce startup Verishop is launching an in-house brand, a skincare line called Ghost Democracy, Business Insider has learned.
- Ghost Democracy hopes to cash in on the clean skincare boom with products aimed at young consumers.
- Verishop sees the brand as a way to show it can compete with Amazon by demonstrating its fulfillment abilities and ability to develop its own products.
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Former Snap chief strategy officer Imran Khan’s e-commerce startup Verishop doesn’t just want to be a third-party reseller. It also wants to stake a claim in retail with its own brands.
Ghost Democracy wants to cash in on the clean skincare boom
Ghost Democracy is a direct-to-consumer brand that’s pitching itself as clean skincare products at an affordable price. It has five products at launch, including face serums, a face oil and a moisturizer, each priced under $38, with a sixth one and bundles launching soon, according to an email from the product line.
The brand is also attempting to cash in on the natural beauty market, which reached $13.2 billion in 2018 as people increasingly opt for products free of chemicals and other artificial ingredients.
While Verishop owns and distributes Ghost Democracy, the brand operates independently and has its own staff, according to a source close to Verishop.
Khan is trying to build an alternative to Amazon
Khan is trying to build an alternative to Amazon with Verishop by focusing on specific product categories including fashion, beauty and wellness.
His pitch is that while other marketplaces have a problem with counterfeit goods and unverified resellers, Verishop offers brands a safe selling environment because it buys the products from vetted brands, warehouses them, and resells them itself.
With Ghost Democracy, Verishop is hoping to show it can handle product fulfillment and make competitive products of its own, the source said.
Private-label brands typically have higher profit margins than their national brand counterparts because they cost less to make.
Still, Amazon is an online retail behemoth and is also pumping resources into its own private-label offerings. Amazon will account for 38% of all e-commerce in the US in 2019, according to eMarketer, and just launched another private label-brand, AdAge reported.
Experts have told Business Insider that Verishop’s emphasis on trust and the shopping experience could help it stand out as Amazon’s breadth can be overwhelming for consumers, companies can find it hard to get their products discovered, and counterfeit goods and unverified third-party sellers persist.
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