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Philly-area gold exchange startup reaches $1M in revenue just 10 months after launch

As Alloy looks to raise another round for its “Carvana of gold” platform, Brandon Aversano talks about his explosive founder journey.

CEO and founder Brandon Aversano holds Alloy's recently redesigned self-assessment kit (Alloy/LinkedIn)
This is a guest post by Founding Philly host Zach Brand. A version of it originally appeared in the podcast's newsletter. It appears here as part of a media partnership between Technical.ly and Founding Philly.

Gold prices are at record highs. People looking to cash in by selling a piece of jewelry have an alternative to the usual haggling, thanks to a Philadelphia-area company.

Bucks County resident Brandon Aversano founded Alloy after a disappointing personal experience on Philly’s Jeweler’s Row. 

Driven by the need to cover substantial medical bills after a cancer diagnosis, he went to the historic neighborhood filled with signs offering “Cash for Gold” to seek just that. But he encountered significant challenges in receiving fair prices for his jewelry.

“I was totally intimidated and bullied into selling the items,” Averso told Technical.ly last year. “So I ended up not selling them.”

That inspired him to create Alloy. Think of it as Carvana, but for gold. Instead of an in-person process filled with opacity and ambiguity, it offers a straightforward digital experience centered on customer service and transparency. 

The online precious metals exchange platform has been a smashing success. This April, just 10 months after launch, it announced the milestone of $1 million in revenue.

Aversano started out with a $150,000 investment from family and friends. Keeping his headquarters in Newtown, PA, he built an impressive management team, tapping his network in management consulting and product design at Morgan Chase, JetBlue and Deloitte to pull in execs with experience at some of those companies, plus Uber and Disney.

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Accessible via website or app, Alloy’s platform offers self-assessment kits, insurance on shipping, video-recorded evaluations, and personalized support from “Alloy Advisors,” dedicated professionals who guide each person through the selling process. After giving customers fair value for their goods, Alloy resells the metals on the commodities market.

A seed funding round last December led by California-based, AAPI-led angel investment firm Unity Holdings brought in $800,000, according to the Philadelphia Business Journal, which reported Alloy had projections of $10 million in revenue in its second year and $20 million the year after that.

Now Alloy is raising another round, according to Aversano. “We’re eager for any and all connections to Angel Syndicates, HNW Angel investors, and like-minded/mission-driven VCs,” he posted on LinkedIn.

“My philosophy from the very beginning,” Aversano said on the Founding Philly podcast, “was to just never be afraid to be the novice in life. Because if you are afraid to be a novice and if you have to always act like you know it all, then there’s no room to learn.”

Tune into Episode 40 to hear the CEO talk about his founding journey, the challenges he overcame and the lessons he learned along the way.

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