Konvi: The crowdfunding platform for exclusive investments

Her-Age team has interviewed Lena Sonnen, Co-Founder, CMO of Konvi, which is the European crowdfunding platform to diversify into new asset classes beyond all the mainstream ones and it enables anyone to gain partial ownership into high-yielding, luxury goods. 

So how was Konvi born? and why are investors seeking new effective ways to diversify their wealth in correlation with NFTs ? Lena Sonnen answers all these questions and gives a warm welcoming to the​  special world of Konvi.  


Can you talk about yourself and your background in the tech industry?

Lena Sonnen: I am Lena, Co-Founder of Konvi and I started my career in the tech industry. After my master’s degree in Economics and Management of Innovation & Technology at Bocconi University, I joined Facebook/Meta as a Growth Strategist. I had the opportunity to work on innovative projects especially focusing on the startup and FinTech sector which was great since I have always been passionate about finance and technology and love innovation. Two years ago, we founded Konvi which is my absolute passion project. Konvi is a crowd-investment platform giving anyone access to alternative luxury assets that have previously only been available to large scale investors.


How was the Konvi app idea born?

Lena Sonnen: Konvi was founded in 2020 in the midst of the COVID crisis with the full conviction that young and small investors should have the same opportunities as large investors when it comes to asset classes. My co-founders and me are retail investors ourselves with a passion for luxury assets.

Every finance guide always recommends diversifying a financial portfolio in a way that 1) suits the risk profile of the investor and 2) ensures the right stability & return focus. Yet, in reality for beginner or small retail investors most asset classes that allow effective portfolio diversification due to their correlation to other asset classes are out of reach. This is because of very high entry barriers in terms of minimum investments for luxury assets like super rare watches, fine wine, whiskey, handbags and co.

In line with the recent trends of democratizing the stock market through offering fractional shares, we believe it’s about high time that traditionally-exclusive alternative assets are also made accessible to the broad population. Especially after the 2020 stock market crash, retail investors are seeking new effective ways to diversify their wealth. 

Why did you choose to focus on rare wine, fine watches, and whiskey?

Lena Sonnen: We started with ultra-rare watches, such as the Cartier XL Tortue High Complication Platinum “CPCP” (Collection Privée Cartier Paris) which was only produced 15 times by Cartier and has a recommended retail price of 500,000 USD. These are limited edition pieces that are great potential investments if you get access to it at a good time and a good price. Fine wine and whiskey are also very exciting and high-yielding investment opportunities which have historically always been used by large investors.

To give an example on the potential returns, watches have historically appreciated up to 20% p.a., fine wine 8.9% p.a. and whiskey 10% p.a. which are impressive returns when compared to the S&P 500. Since these luxury assets usually enjoy a low volatility, they are great additions to anyone’s investment portfolio. But that’s not all. The nature of these luxury assets also allows investors to invest into their passions – many collectors are very passionate about a rare Cartier watch, a McCallum whiskey or a fine Bordeaux wine. Enjoying these assets and making returns from them at the same time is a great mix. However, watches, wine and whiskey are not the only promising luxury assets. Konvi will also offer investment opportunities of collectible cars, handbags, art and more in the future.


Konvi is a CO2 neutral platform, are you planning to implement even more sustainable innovations to become as eco-friendly as possible?

Lena Sonnen: Yes, it was really important to us from day zero. At Konvi we believe companies have a moral obligation to have a positive impact on society. Therefore, by planting forests, we constantly offset at least the amount of CO2 from the atmosphere that we emit, to be a carbon net-zero company. We are planning to initiate other sustainability projects in the future, including team city cleanup events or tree planting days.


Do you consider the small investor market a challenging space?

Lena Sonnen: I think small investors are often disadvantaged when it comes to investment opportunities. Many very profitable investment channels and asset classes are out of reach for the average retail investors as they only accept High-Net-Worth-Individuals or large scale and institutional investors. Yet, in the. 21st century we finally see the trends of democratizing alternative investment channels such as ultra-rare high-yielding luxury assets on Konvi.


Hermès Birkin bag is famously known as valuable luxury asset, do you think Chanel flap bag with its raising price can ever outperform it?

Lena Sonnen: To be honest, I am not sure. Hermès Birkin is a classic and even one of the best performing alternative assets in the world, outperforming the S&P 500 not only once. Chanel bags are not performing on that level on the vintage and second-hand market. Many vintage Chanel bags are actually selling below retail price which is not the case for Hermès Birkin or Kelly bags. But let’s see, maybe Chanel will dramatically change its pricing strategy to actually see similar effects with their brand.


Asset owners who invest 1000€+ are eligible to receive NFT versions too - how does this benefit Konvi’s customers? 

Lena Sonnen: The Konvi NFTs come with multiple utilities for customers. NFT holders enjoy priority access rights, event invitations (e.g. fine wine or whiskey tastings, meet ups with WatchFund or Konvi events), early access to features and once we’re there they can also wear their NFT assets in the metaverse.


Which unexpected luxury item can become an interesting investment in the future?

Lena Sonnen: Rare cars but also rare and limited sneaker collections.


What do you think about the future of NFT’s?

Lena Sonnen: We believe there is a future for NFTs especially if connected to authentication and paired with physical assets. There are multiple use cases that definitely make a lot of sense; however, we also believe the industry needs to settle a little more as it’s currently very badly affected by scams.


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