December 24, 1982
|Alma mater||Stanford University |
|Occupation||Founder and CEO of Stitch Fix|
Katrina Lake (born December 24, 1982) is an American businesswoman who is the founder and CEO of Stitch Fix, a fashion-based subscription service. Stitch Fix was established in 2011 in San Francisco and went public in 2017. In 2017, Lake became the youngest woman to take a company public at age 34 and was the only woman in 2017 to lead an initial public offering in technology. She was surpassed by Whitney Wolfe Herd in 2021, who took Bumble public at age 31.
Early life and education
Lake was born on December 24, 1982 in San Francisco. Her mother is a Japanese immigrant who taught in the public school system, and her father was a doctor at UCSF and the University of Minnesota. She initially wanted to become a doctor before she became an entrepreneur. She began on the pre-med course but became very interested in economics and business.
While pursuing her MBA from Harvard, Lake founded Stitch Fix in 2011 at the age of 28. Lake collected SurveyMonkey data from her clients to get a sense of their style. She would use the information to hand select outfits and send them to her customers. At its early stages, Lake did not even have the Internet capabilities to charge her customers and required trust from her clients to pay her monthly. In 2012, Lake was introduced to Netflix VP of data science and engineering Eric Colson, who initially dismissed the business model as "whimsical" but within months joined the company as "chief algorithms officer". She has combined data science with marketing to grow the business.[vague]
Customers of Stitch Fix order "fixes" of five items, selected for them by professional stylists, as a one off or at scheduled intervals, and are subsequently given three days to choose which items they want to keep. In 2016–17, Stitch Fix had $730 million in sales.
Lake was listed as one of Fast Company's 100 Most Creative People in Business  and in the 2016 Fortune (magazine) 40 under 40. Lake was the only woman to take an internet company public in 2017. On the day of the initial public offering, Stitch Fix raised nearly $120 million dollars. In 2018, she was named Disruptor of the Year by Retail Dive.
Lake appeared as a guest shark on Season 11, Episode 14 of the ABC show Shark Tank, which aired on March 6, 2020. Lori Greiner of HSN and Lake teamed up to make a deal with a young budding company for children’s glasses, Pair Eyewear.
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- "Young Influencers: 4 YPO Members Named to 'Fortune's' 40 Under 40". YPO. 2018-08-13. Retrieved 2021-01-30.
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