Los Angeles-based Loot Crate tops the list by overcoming shipping strikes, product scarcity, and the uncertain subscription-box economy to succeed in the business of fandom.
Inc.com reports on it’s #1 fastest growing company.
Loot Crate is a $116 million, Los Angeles-based business, winning the No. 1 slot on the 2016 Inc. 500 list of America’s fastest-growing private companies. In its 130,000-square-foot warehouse, a team of 300 employees packs up to 70,000 boxes a day, shipping monthly to 650,000 subscribers in 35 countries. On a wave of Matrix puzzles, Han Solo figurines, and Walking Dead soaps, Loot Crate has built a rabid community of geeks and gamers, who open their crates and dish about the contents–and anything else related to fandom–on the company’s social sites. Half a million fans watch Loot Crate’s Facebook live videos every month, and user-generated video views on YouTube top more than two billion. “We want to be where people with like interests hang out,” says Arevalo.
For about $20, subscribers get a monthly box of half a dozen items. Rather than organize the crates around a single movie or comic book, Loot Crate picks broad themes, so there’s something for everyone. The “Time” crate, for instance, included a Back to the Future hoverboard replica, a Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure T-shirt, and a Doctor Who spork. “I’m a broader fan, and that mindset works well on the curation side,” says Davis. “We want to make it compelling, even if you’re not a superfan of a particular franchise.”
Is content bigger than subscription?
Barkbox is investing heavily in content. So I was surprised and delighted to see that Loot Crate CEO Chris Davis sees things similarly.
Though Loot Crate launched at a time when subscription boxes were going gangbusters, Davis knew that longevity would likely go to those companies that could stretch their customers’ joy beyond one day a month of receiving mail. So he set out to extend the brand: Loot Crate launched an app, seeded fan communities across Snapchat and Reddit, and built out an in-house team of designers, developers, and writers to create custom content. The company releases an interactive game each month, includes a 24-page magazine in each crate, and produces scripted, multicamera videos with geeky plots. “We think of ourselves now as more of a content and experience platform,” says Davis. “Whether it’s print or mobile or digital, we want to deliver this great experience to fans. That’s bigger than subscription boxes.”
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COMPANY: Loot Crate
2016 INC. 5000 RANK: 1
HEADQUARTERS: Los Angeles, CA
YEAR FOUNDED: 2012
2015 REVENUE: $116.2 million
3-YEAR GROWTH: 66,789%