|Industry||Online, on demand marketplace for artists|
|Products||Customized products with original art work|
|Revenue||A$115 million (2016)|
Number of employees
Redbubble is a global online marketplace for print-on-demand products based on user-submitted artwork. The company was founded in 2006 in Melbourne, Australia, and also maintains offices in San Francisco and Berlin.
The company operates primarily on the Internet and allows its members to sell their artwork as decoration on a variety of products. Products include prints, T-shirts, hoodies, cushions, duvet covers, leggings, stickers, skirts, and scarves. The company offers free membership to artists who maintain the copyrights to their work, regulate their own prices, and decide which products may display their images.
The company was founded in 2006 by Martin Hosking, Peter Styles, and Paul Vanzella after raising $2 million in investor capital. On 16 June 2011, Hosking left his position at Aconex to focus on his job as CEO of Redbubble.
In March 2014, it was reported that 51,900 artists have successfully sold their creations on Redbubble generating more than A$15 million in earnings. At the time it was estimated that eight million unique viewers visited the site every month.
In 2015, Redbubble raised A$15.5 million in funding from various investors including Melbourne-based Acorn Capital and London based investor Piton Capital.
Since February 2015, Redbubble has been running an artist residency program at their Melbourne office. The purpose of the program is to enable selected artists with the opportunity to produce artwork at Redbubble artist studio while collaborating with other artists.
The company was listed on the Australian Stock Exchange in May 2016.
In January 2017, Hosking reported 450,000 active artists and 10 million site visits per month. In the last ten years, almost 7 million people have bought products from the site, generating $70 million earned by artists.
In June 2018, it was announced that Hosking would be stepping down as CEO. COO Barry Newstead, who has been with the company since 2013, would take over as CEO in August 2018.
In June 2011, The Register and The Age reported that artists on Redbubble were offering T-shirts images taken from the satirical online comic strip Hipster Hitler. Some Redbubble users perceived the comic and its products as antisemitic, pressuring PayPal to investigate whether it violated their policy. In May 2011 Arnold Bloch Leibler, a law firm with connections to the Australian Jewish community, severed their business relationship with Redbubble for "promoting Nazism". Both Redbubble's CEO, Martin Hosking, and the head of B'nai B'rith's Anti Defamation Commission recognized Hipster Hitler as parody but noted that it was being misunderstood – this was due in part to the limited context of the merchandise and stories that some hate groups had allegedly praised Hipster Hitler – and discussed how best to deal with such work. Three weeks later on 5 June 2011, The Age reported that Hosking, who had originally defended the work as free speech, removed the entire Hipster Hitler merchandise line and said the guidelines would be changed to "prohibit parodies of genocide and the Holocaust, as well as other material likely to cause deep offence". Such a statement does not appear literally or clearly semantically in Redbubble's community guidelines. At the same time he said it was hard to take a nuanced approach to removing Hipster Hitler merchandise due to the nature of the controversy. Hosking's decision to pull Hipster Hitler's line was applauded by the Simon Wiesenthal Center as being responsive to both artists and the Jewish community. On 12 and 15 June 2011 articles by digital media company Ninemsn and news web site Stuff.co.nz reported that artists on Redbubble were selling baby clothes featuring pictures of Hitler, Osama bin Laden and serial killers Ivan Milat, Ted Bundy and Charles Manson.
According to a 9 September 2011 article in the Herald Sun more than 100 children's items remained on sale, some with "four-letter swear words" and drug images. In 2012 the Los Angeles Times reported that due to outrage over the death of Trayvon Martin, artists on Redbubble were offering a hoodie with a version of a "Neighborhood Watch" sign, which warns, darkly, "We immediately murder all suspicious persons".
Since 2008, Redbubble has been nominated and won a series of awards including:
- May 2015, two Hermes Awards (platinum for Redbubble Blog, gold for Redbubble Website)
- December 2013, Pixel Awards, nominee – Art
- November 2013, SmartCompany, Web Awards 2013 – Best company website (over 20 employees)
- December 2012, Deloitte Technology, Fast 500, Asia Pacific 2012 winner
- November 2012, Deloitte Technology, Fast 50, 2012 winner
- October 2012, BRW, BRW FAST 100
- September 2010, Web Marketing Association, Outstanding Achievement in Web Development
- August 2010, Smart Company Award, Best Website Under 20 Employees
- March 2010, AIMIA, Finalist Cultural or Lifestyle, Social Media
- February 2010, Next Web, Runner-up, Most Likely to Change the World
- November 2009, Deloitte Technology Fast 50, Rising Star Runner-up
- September 2009, Web Marketing Association, Outstanding Achievement in Web Development
- July 2009, Telstra Business Awards, finalist MYOB Small Business
- June 2009, Interactive Media Association, finalist Top 10 Sites of 2008
- May 2009, The Webby Awards, nominee – Community
- August 2008, Interactive Media Association, two Best-in-Class awards
- June 2008, BRW, 3rd-ranked Australian 2.0 Website
- Accessible publishing
- Alternative media
- Article processing charge
- Author mill
- Custom media
- Dynamic publishing
- Independent music
- List of self-publishing companies
- Offset printing
- Online shopping
- Predatory open access publishing
- Print on demand
- Self Publish, Be Happy
- Category:Self-published books
- Category:Self-publishing companies
- Category:Self-publishing online stores
- Self publishing
- Small press
- Vanity award
- Vanity gallery
- Vanity label
- Vanity press
- Vanity publishing
- Variable data printing
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