Fitbay (www.fitbay.com ), the discovery platform that solves the problem of buying clothes online in the wrong size or style, has closed a $2 million USD seed funding round, lead by New York-based Steadfast Venture Capital and Stockholm-based VC firm, Creandum, an early investor in Spotify.
This $2 million USD investment comes just 6 months after Fitbay closed an angel round with Jesper Buch (Founder of Just-Eat) and Creandum . The latest funding will be used to grow both the product team in Copenhagen and the commercial team in New York, and to develop the product and available features even further. This announcement also coincides with the launch of Fitbay’s new iOS app, which allows users to share pictures of themselves with their network of ‘body doubles’, and actually see how items of clothing fit other people with a similar body shape and size to their own.
Fitbay wants to remove the “will-it-won’t-it fit experience” from online clothes shopping by only showing users clothes that will fit their unique size and shape. Fitbay does this by connecting users with similar body types and style preferences, sorting them into groups so that information on fit and particular brands can be shared with other users who have similar body shapes and tastes. This crowd-sourced feedback allows Fitbay to provide its users with a personalised feed of products that will both fit and flatter their unique body type – all without having to input measurements. Users can also follow their ‘body doubles’, sharing tips and inspiration with others who will have similar experiences with the style, fit and sizing of different brands.
According to research carried out by Credit Suisse in January 2013, 40% of online clothing purchases are returned, often as a consequence of inconsistencies of sizing between brands, or sizing standardisation ignoring the reality of different body shapes. Christian Wylonis, Founder & CEO of Fitbay comments, “ Only 15% of all clothes are bought online, indicating a relatively low consumer adoption of ecommerce within fashion. People are frustrated by the online shopping and returns process, and don’t have the patience or time to use virtual fitting rooms that require very specific body or clothing measurements. Using social shopping, Fitbay can crowd source size and fit information from thousands of unique body types to only show our users clothes that will fit them – without measuring tapes.”
Having been invite-only since its launch in February 2014, Fitbay is now available to the general public as an open beta on the web and iOS. Having grown an average of 110% per month, Fitbay is now able to recommend and link to over 2 million perfectly-fitting products for its users, from brands both big and small across the web. Founded in Copenhagen, and with a commercial office in New York, over 40% of Fitbay users are based in the United States.
Christian Wylonis, Founder & CEO of Fitbay comments, “Over the past four months we have had an overwhelming response from our users, and we are looking forward to the next stage in our journey as a result of both Creandum and Steadfast Venture Capital’s backing. With the launch of the Fitbay app, mobile is a core part of our business model, and at the heart of what we offer our customers. By sharing and seeing photos of their body doubles wearing specific items or brands, users can get an idea of how certain clothes will look on their own frames, and shop online accordingly. We describe this process as ‘selfies with a purpose’ because it’s the first time that selfies actually have a practical application.”
Martin Hauge, General Partner at Creandum , comments: “We are proud to back Fitbay for the second time within 6 months. The user growth and engagement have been exceptional, and we have high hopes for what Fitbay can become. I believe that Fitbay is the next Spotify.”
Founded in 2013, and launched in March 2014, Copenhagen-based Fitbay has experienced month-on-month growth of 110%, and a growing database of over 2 million items of clothing is currently accessible to the Fitbay community. In January 2014, Fitbay raised $400,000 of investment from Jesper Buch, founder of Just-Eat, and Creandum. The Fitbay revenue model is based on commission paid by retailers on purchases made via Fitbay.
Steadfast Venture Capital is an early stage investment firm based in New York City.
Creandum is the leading Nordic venture capital firm investing in innovative and fast-growing technology companies within the consumer internet, software, and hardware sectors. The firm has over €250M under management and has invested in over 20 companies including Spotify, Vivino, Tictail, Wrapp, iZettle, and Videoplaza.
Fitbay on the App Store: https://itunes.apple.com/gb/app/fitbay-discover-clothes-that/id881787887?mt=8