Sunday, August 26, 2012

Sophia Amoruso's 'Nasty Gal' is Hot

This lady's clothing line is smokin'!

At the Los Angeles Times, "Nasty Gal clothing company — as red-hot as its founder's lipstick":

Sophia Amoruso
Sophia Amoruso doesn't care if you're offended by the name of her company.

"If it's a big shock when you hear it," she says, "you're probably not our customer anyway."

She's earned the right to be dismissive. Amoruso, 28, is the founder and chief executive of Nasty Gal, a fast-rising e-commerce site that has managed to keep a low profile despite a cult following of young women who can't get enough of the company's edgy and provocative clothing.

Sales rocketed 10,160% from 2008 to 2011, making Nasty Gal the fastest-growing company in Los Angeles and the fastest-growing retail company period, at least according to the Inc. 5000 list released this month. After securing a $9-million investment in January from Index Ventures, which has also backed Facebook and Etsy, Nasty Gal just scored an additional $40 million from the venture capital firm.

That would be hugely impressive for any 6-year-old start-up. But Amoruso isn't your typical entrepreneur.

She's a community college dropout who has never taken a business or fashion class and admits she doesn't know how to make a PowerPoint presentation. Nasty Gal, expected to bring in more than $100 million in sales this year, is her first company. Previously, she was checking student IDs at the entrance to a college dorm for $13 an hour.

With slightly unkempt hair, bright red lips and a daring sense of style, Amoruso is, employees say, the ultimate nasty gal. Much of what the brand sells is a reflection of her own fashion whims.

"There is not an ounce of pretension about her," said Deborah Benton, who left Kim Kardashian's start-up ShoeDazzle in June to join Nasty Gal as president and chief operating officer. "That core value of authenticity — it comes through loud and clear in the brand."
Some photos of the Nasty Gal line here.