This millennial pitch deck raised $ 500,000 for an online art gallery


  • An artist herself, Alix Greenberg has started a business to help other creators sell their work.
  • ArtSugar is an art store and gallery where millennials can discover new and emerging artists.
  • Greenberg shared the pitch deck that helped her raise $ 500,000 in seed funding.
  • See more stories on the Insider business page.

“Do you want to be independent or do you want to be an entrepreneur? “

That’s the question a friend asked Alix Greenberg that changed her business trajectory from a rambling Instagram account where she sold her designs, to an online gallery and e-commerce site geared towards millennials called ArtSugar.

After working in art galleries and museums for seven years, the Christie’s MA and Cornell BFA graduate returned to portraiture on a whim. Greenberg started “Portraits for Good” where she donated to charity for every portrait she sold.

“No one had ever paid me for my art before, so it was a new idea for me,” she told Insider.

But facing the future of her career, she decided that she would rather be a founder of a startup helping other artists make money than be an artist herself. So she recruited artists to sell on her site, continued to partner with charities, and built her business while working 9 to 5. After two years, she hired a friend to help her change. brand and took the business full time.

Today, his company’s annual revenue is up 80% since last March, in part because more people bought art online during the pandemic. Online art sales in 2020 doubled from 2019, marking the first time that e-commerce’s share in an estimated $ 50 billion market has exceeded that of retail, according to a report from the Bank of UBS investment.

a dog is sitting on a colorful bed in a room full of rainbow art

ArtSugar works of art are displayed in a bedroom.


Last month, Greenberg secured $ 500,000 in seed funding through Curate Capital, a firm that focuses its investments on women-owned businesses. In 2020, the average amount of venture capital funding for women’s teams was $ 6.8 million, compared to $ 18.7 million for men’s teams, according to a PitchBook report.

Curate founder Carrie Colbert first discovered ArtSugar on Instagram as a collector herself, before contacting Greenberg to invest. Their relationship grew over time with monthly and weekly check-ins until Greenberg felt Colbert was the right person to help him take his business to the next level.

“A lot of VCs were asking me about my exit plan and it was very difficult for me to explain what I wanted to do with it,” Greenberg said. “But Carrie wasn’t that focused on that. She just knew that if we cultivated something amazing together, the exit would just show up.”

Check out the pitch deck Greenberg sent out to investors last year to find out how she landed her first round of funding.


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