Etsy is acquiring Grand St., a marketplace for “creative technology.” Grand St. is a curated marketplace that connects independent hardware makers with buyers. It’s a sort of Quirky-Kickstarter-Etsy mashup that according to Etsy CEO Chad Dickerson shares Etsy’s vision “the way making is changing.”
Co-founders Amanda Peyton, Joe Lallouz and Aaron Henshaw will join Etsy but will continue to operate the Grand St. marketplace in the near term.
Visitors to Grand St. have three options for getting their hands on the hardware under development by indie designer/sellers. Buyers can preorder an item under development; they can beta test an item; or they can purchase goods that have made it to market.
There are no upfront or monthly fees to sell on the marketplace. Sellers pay an 8% commission on the sale price (before taxes and shipping) on each order, plus the standard Stripe credit card processing fee of 2.9% plus 30-cent transaction fee for products in the Grand St. Shop and on the Beta platform. For Pre-Orders, Grand St. take zero commissions plus the standard credit card fees.
Etsy spokesperson Nikki Summer said there’s no immediate plan to connect the two marketplaces – “Grand St. will continue to operate independently of Etsy,” she said, but Grand St.’s eight employees will be based in Brooklyn at the Etsy offices supporting Member Operations.
“Products sold on Grand St. can be sold on Etsy as long as they meet our guidelines, just like any other products sold on Etsy,” Summer said.
In a blog post on Grand St., the co-founders wrote, “While this is a big step for us as a company, we plan to change very little about the site and your experience of Grand St. in the near term. We exist to bring you the best in indie electronics from designers and makers all over the world, and we’ll continue to do that at grandst.com. We will continue to launch new features and have a few coming out soon that we think you’ll love.”
The acquisition is subject to closing conditions. You can read more about what Etsy’s CEO had to say about the pending acquisition on the Etsy blog.