Swaplanet and Genesis Ventures
Swaplanet is an online sustainable fashion platform, where busy parents can swap their kids’ clothes that they no longer need with ones that they actually need. Swaplanet co-founders Sherif Barakat, Helena Stamou and Jimmy Nicolaides, met in an incubator in Sept 2020 and they quickly found out that they shared similar values for sustainability and for the planet, therefore they decided to create an online platform to extend the useful lives of clothes, reducing at the same time CO2 emissions and water waste. The company was  founded in April 2021 and launched in summer 2021.

The textile industry is the second-biggest polluter in the world, responsible for 10% of global CO2 emissions (compared to 6% for plastics) and 20% of global wastewater. The numbers hit home when you realize that one simple T-shirt requires 2,700 litres of water. The growth of fast fashion has only made things worse. Swaplanet is actively tackling this problem by encouraging more swapping and less shopping, while helping families to reduce their spending on kids’ clothing by as much as 90%. All clothes are individually sorted and washed by Swaplanet, to ensure every item is in excellent condition. By giving new lives to pre-loved clothes, we can all reduce CO2 emissions and water waste, reduce resource extraction, and reduce landfill waste, helping nature to recuperate from years of human abuse.

“Swaplanet is a win-win solution for parents, kids, charities and our planet, and it’s designed by parents, for parents” says Sherif Barakat, our CEO and co-founder, a father of two kids (4 years old and 1 year old). “We are excited to have received great customer feedback since launch, validating our vision and the need for such a solution. We want more parents to learn about how we can change their buying habits and we are pleased to have the backing of leading investors and industry greats to take Swaplanet to more families. We have rapidly grown our client base to more than 3,500 users and growing every day and our goal is to reach 50K customers in Greece and 150K at a European level.”
With our intuitive platform, users create an account, earn credit by sending their pre-loved clothes and use their credit to order the next set of clothes for their kids (who grow so fast”). We have grown from initially serving Athens, to all Greece (even the most remote islands). The team has grown to eight employees and have received and sorted more than 30,000 articles of clothing from parents and have uploaded more than 14,000 clothes to our platform for swapping.

The clothes that do not pass our strict quality control checks are donated to partner charities such as Fabric Republic and Khora Athens, while 2% of annual income is donated to www.we4All.com  charity for reforestation and environmental education for children.

Stergios Anastasiadis, Partner at Genesis Ventures, says "The Swaplanet team is one of the most hard-working and "hungry" driven teams we have seen to date. Helena, Sherif, and Jimmy are not only focused on solving a hard problem but understand that end user experiences need to be great, so they re-worked all 7 experiences within 3 months and improved at the same time their unit economics by 30%. This data driven approach will set them up nicely for geo expansion as well."

Mr. Dimitris Georgakopoulos, Partner at Zeno Capital, stated: "We are thrilled to co-lead this funding round of Swaplanet, the topmost children clothes swapping platform in Greece. The founding team of Swaplanet has already delivered impressive and very promising results. We were amazed by the user friendliness of the platform, the exceptional quality of the products and foremost by the positive impact it creates by reducing emissions and waste. Swaplanet is well-positioned to achieve substantial growth in the second-hand ecommerce sector" 

Mr. Dimitris Tsingos, co-founder of the Hellenic Business Angels Network (HeBAN) added: we are overly excited that Swaplanet is one of the first investments that our group arranges for its members. At HeBAN we are looking for strong and motivated teams with a scalable product in a growing market and we feel that Swaplanet has the potential to efficiently service society's needs for sustainable clothing. We are looking forward to supporting the company in its plans together with its strong and diverse group of co-investors. For this investment, HeBAN's members were also joined by the founder of a leading healthcare US start-up, as well as by one of the pioneers of angel investing. Next goals of swaplanet are to increase the variety of products that they accept for swapping and enter a new market in early 2023.