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Conversations with the founder of flash sale site PLNDR

Posted by Alex Pearlman  May 15, 2012 10:20 AM

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showoff-landing-banner.jpgBy: Melissa Reohr

The Karmaloop/PLNDR offices on Boylston Street have an amazing culture. Even early in the morning, the vibe is upbeat and happy. There’s music playing, hip designers sporting tattoos and  stylish hair, and best of all, there are PUPPIES.

The cool office culture really helps define the mindset of the company and what they’re trying to be: a crazy-fun environment for the up-and-coming generation.

Leandrew Robinson directly translated the culture of the office to his site, PLNDR, an online limited time sale boutique and place to connect and share the latest trends in streetwear.

“You go into a place and you’re getting all of these treasures for free. . . well, in this case a discounted price,” said Robinson, who launched the site in spring 2010.

The philosophy of the site is to change the way young people shop, focusing on exclusivity and flash sales. With a members-only approach to streetwear, PLNDR can take designer goods and flip them to members for unbelievable prices, reflecting the inspiration for the site’s name – the way pirates get booty. By plundering the designer fashion, members get the loot for up to 80 percent off, and the site also has a $5 or Less section.

Of course, where there are young people, there’s a social tie-in. The Show Off section is where members can connect with one another by showing off their individual style and purchases on the PLNDR site.

Show Off not only creates a community feel for the site’s members, but it also helps the PLNDR team understand what the customers want and need, according to Robinson, who described the section as a social network dedicated to fashion.

Ever since he attended University of California, Berkley, Robinson was a self-starter. He created a t-shirt company called Ragamuffin that targeted social issues through sassy words and images on everyday cotton tees. The shirts quickly became well-known around campus as an inspiring and popular clothing line.

When Robinson moved to Boston, he connected with Greg Selkoe, the CEO of Karmaloop, and immediately wanted to get involved with the business.

“I just wanted to add value wherever I can—you don’t even need to pay me,” Robinson remembers saying to Selkoe, who agreed to the arrangement, and had Robinson working remotely in California for free.

After a test during which Robinson worked on a three-day pop-up sale of Crooks and Castles apparel and sold approximately $90,000 worth of merchandise, it was clear there was potential success in this type of flash-sale business. Obviously, he was right. There are 1.3 million members on PLNDR and it’s growing.

Robinson is looking forward to the future development of PLNDR, which includes an upcoming iPhone app and an Android version that’ll follow quickly thereafter.

Have you checked out PLNDR? What do you think? Leave a comment and let us know!

Photo by PLNDR.

About Melissa -- I am a senior at Bentley University and will be graduating in May. After graduation, I plan to live in Boston because I love it here. I am obsessed with social media and blogging and can't wait to further my skills and knowledge of both.

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