Online gift retailer Firebox.com, best known for its quirky, giftable creations, including Unicorn Tears Gin (the original shimmer spirit), the Mystery Box, CrapWrap and Mushions, has been acquired by Austrian e-commerce service provider MH direkt for an undisclosed sum. Firebox has served over 5m customers to date and has become a platform for extraordinary gift items outside the mainstream.
Independently owned by Michael Acton Smith and Tom Boardman, Firebox.com was one of the first UK e-commerce success stories. The company has set the bar for unusual gifts and online shopping, launching on the back of their successful invention the shot glass chess in1998. The company continues to offer a unique product range, as well as original and creative in-house developments.
As a one-stop provider for the e-commerce sector, MH direkt already works with a number of online retailers, and also successfully owns European gift sites Radbag, Troppotogo and CadeauxFolies, seeing the acquisition of Firebox is an important milestone in the growth strategy of the Austrian company.
“Firebox was always a role model for us and we’ve learned a lot from them when it comes to creating a really great, extraordinary gift shopping site,” says Philipp Schindler’s ceo MH direkt. “We believe that our own shops and Firebox complement each other very well.”
He continues: “Both shops will be operated separately, yet working closely together in terms of marketing and product development. We are looking forward to bundling our creativity and gifting expertise in order to make our shops better and our customers happier. All in all, there’s a lot of synergies between the brands to benefit from. We see Firebox as an excellent addition to our portfolio.
“The market entry in Great Britain offers us a great opportunity, on the one hand in the B2C business, with significantly more customers and a correspondingly higher number of annual orders, and on the other hand in the B2B area, where we want to enlarge our business and strengthen our position as a company in the future. This is our most important goal within the framework of constant and organic growth.”
Firebox’s managing director Kristian Bromley added: “We’ve been close allies for a long time and this move makes perfect sense for all of us. Our aim is to continue to grow our unusual product offering and be the go-to destination for hard-to-find, unique gifts.”
Top: Firebox.com has been acquired by MH direkt.