Continuing a measured yet ambitious expansion just after snapping up resale favorite Depop, Etsy on Monday announced an agreement to acquire Elo7, a privately held artisanal e-marketplace in Brazil, for $217 million in cash.
Elo7, whose CEO Carlos Curioni called Etsy "an inspiration and a reference for us," will remain headquartered in Sāo Paulo and run by Curioni's team as a stand-alone company, the companies said.
Elo7's marketplace has about 1.9 million active buyers and about 56,000 active sellers, and most of its 8 million or so items are made to order, per the press release.
This acquisition will help widen Etsy's focus beyond North America, Europe and India to include one of the fastest growing online markets in the world.
Brazil runs Latin America's largest economy and "has developed into a sizeable e-commerce market, consistently posting double-digit growth rates in the mid-teens between 2015 and 2017," according to J.P. Morgan research. The country is among the emerging markets making "the most significant shifts to online activities," per Qualtrics research.
Amazon is already taking part. Earlier this month, the e-commerce giant, which has first- and third-party operations in Brazil, opened its marketplace there to outside sellers, according to international payments firm dLocal.
Calling Elo7 "the 'Etsy of Brazil,' with a purpose and business model similar to our own," Etsy CEO Josh Silverman said in a statement that the deal "will establish a foothold for us in Latin America, an underpenetrated ecommerce region where Etsy currently does not have a meaningful customer base."
But the move also reflects Etsy's targeted expansion, a stark contrast to Amazon's "everything store" approach. As with its recently announced $1.6 billion acquisition of resale site Depop and its $275 million acquisition of musical gear marketplace Reverb in 2019, Etsy is preserving those sites' branding and other unique aspects.