Queenly, a startup building a garment marketplace aimed at dressing women for formal events, announced this morning that it has purchased Mi Padrino, a company built to serve the quinceañera market.
The two companies’ overlap is obvious: Quinceañeras, events where girls celebrate their 15th birthday with a large event and ornate garb, is an event varietal that Queenly’s product supports. The deal caught our eye not for a lack of synergy, then, but more due to the relative youth of Queenly itself.
TechCrunch has wondered whether the present market downturn would lead to startup-on-startup M&A activity. The Queenly deal is one datapoint that supports that particular thesis.
And Queenly is a startup that several of us at TechCrunch have had our eyes on since its days as part of Y Combinator and through its 2021 fundraising events. So when it reached out with news that it had, despite its relatively modest corporate age, bought something, we got on the phone. Let’s talk about it.
TechCrunch caught up with Queenly CEO Trisha Bantigue this week to discuss the deal and the status of her formalwear-focused startup. (If her name sounds familiar, recall that Bantigue came on the Equity podcast to chat about remote accelerators in early 2021 and wrote an essay about the mental health impacts of building a startup for Fortune in 2022.) What we wanted to find out was simple: How is the company performing, and why is it buying another startup so early in its life?
On the performance front, things appear to be going well at the company. Because Queenly is inherently tied to the IRL market, as COVID wanes in consumers’ minds and formal-dress events creep back onto our calendars, you might expect that it is posting rapid…