Venture

Women-Focused Community The Wing Raises $75M More As It Looks To Expand

The Wing, which has created a network of professional and community spaces designed for women, announced today it raised a $75 million Series C led by Sequoia Capital.

New investors Upfront Ventures and Airbnb also participated in the round, along with existing investors NEA and WeWork. As part of the funding, Sequoia partner Jess Lee and Upfront partner Kara Nortman have joined The Wing’s board of directors.

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Time’s Up leadership, such as actress and producer Kerry Washington and producer Katie McGrath, contributed to the round. U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team players Alex Morgan, Megan Rapinoe, Meghan Klingenberg, and Becky Sauerbrunn also took a stake.

Audrey Gelman and Lauren Kassan co-founded The Wing in 2016, and the duo has raised a total of $117.5 million. This round is more than double the $32 million Series B raised by the company in November 2017.

I spoke with company spokeswoman Zara Rahim this morning, and she declined to detail what the startup intends to do with its latest capital infusion. In a press release, Gelman, The Wing’s CEO, said the investment will allow the company “to further The Wing’s mission and scale to new heights both offline and online.”

Rahim did tell me that The Wing saw its revenue grow 500 percent year-over-year from October 2017 to October 2018. And she added that the company currently has 300 part-time and full-time staff across its five locations—three of which are in New York. The other two are in Washington, D.C. and San Francisco.

Looking ahead, The Wing has plans to more than double its footprint in 2019 with locations planned for Los Angeles, Chicago, London, Boston, Toronto, and Paris. It will also be expanding its SoHo location from 8,000 to 18,000 square feet, according to Rahim.

The Wing’s locations feature amenities such as lactation rooms, libraries, showers, workspaces, and food and drink. The Wing also sponsors free events each month featuring speakers like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Tina Fey, Hillary Clinton, Christiane Amanpour, and Venus Williams. It has also launched a magazine and podcast called No Man’s Land.

There’s no “typical” members, she added. “We have everything from working moms to doctors to students writing their master’s theses to women who are writing books,” Rahim told Crunchbase News.

In a statement, Sequoia’s Lee described The Wing as “a phenomenon.”

“Every Wing location is its own extraordinary community of women who help each other achieve new heights, professionally and personally,” Lee said. “We’re excited to partner with The Wing on growing its footprint globally in the physical realm and into the digital realm. ”

Illustration: Li-Anne Dias