Trouva has been acquired for the third time in two years.

The marketplace for independent boutiques and brands was first snapped up by in May 2022 as it sought to capitalise on the trend towards online purchases during COVID.

However within months had collapsed into insolvency – with people preferring to buy furniture in person as society returned to normal – and retail giant Next agreed a pre-pack administration deal for its brand, domain names and intellectual property.

It promptly divested London-headquartered Trouva, launched in 2015, to Re:store.

Now Fy!, the AI-enabled marketplace specialising in home and living, has moved to acquire Trouva – also based in London – in a strategic acquisition which doubles the size of its business.

Trouva will continue as a separate brand and benefit from Fy!’s search and discovery tools which it says have significantly improved customer engagement. Inspired by platforms like ChatGPT and launched last October, the conversational search tool provides a more natural and contextually aware search experience. The technology is claimed to have led to a 45% increase in revenue per searcher.

Trouva features more than 600 independent boutiques across the UK and EU.

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“The coming together of Fy! and Trouva represents an exciting new chapter for both companies,” said Tom Beverley, Fy! CEO and co-founder. 

“Trouva’s strong brand, unique community of independent boutiques and product curation provide a compelling destination for customers. 

“We look forward to working with the Trouva team to leverage Fy!’s AI-enabled search and discovery to benefit Trouva boutiques and customers.”

Both businesses are currently loss-making but expect to be profitable as a group by Q4 of this year.

Hussein Kanji, founding partner of Hoxton Ventures, commented: “The acquisition of Trouva by Fy! significantly expands its business and capitalises on its status as a frontrunner in AI-enhanced marketplace experiences. 

“This reinforces our belief in Fy!’s growth trajectory and its commitment to innovation in building AI-powered consumer marketplaces.”

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