16
December
2022
|
10:35
Europe/Amsterdam

Fashion tech startup and fast fashion brand Virgio raises US$37m Series A round

Led by former Myntra CEO, Virgio is reimagining the modern fashion industry in India with a tech-led model

16 December 2022, India: Virgio, a fashion tech startup and fast fashion brand, has raised US$37m in a Series A funding round co-led by Prosus Ventures, Accel and Alpha Wave. The funds will go towards further technology development and hiring.

Founded in 2022, Virgio has a clear goal to build a global fashion brand based in India. Its unique model uses technology throughout the design, manufacturing and purchasing process to streamline the entire fashion lifecycle and enable a real-time fashion offering. It is also one of the few trend-led fashion companies globally focused on Gen-Z and late Millennials. Gen-Z, in particular, makes up a larger portion of India’s population (27%) and is a driving force of influence on the fashion industry.[1]

Today’s consumer fashion preferences are changing more rapidly than ever before. This is mainly attributed to the advent and influence of social media on fashion trends, and the industry has not caught up to this. The current industry practices of long lead times are widening this gap between what’s made by the brands and what consumers are looking for.

Virgio is building a fashion tech platform that will allow designers to access consumer preferences in real time. It is also envisioning a tech-led network of factories which enable designers to quickly build prototypes, get consumer feedback, and scale up production. The Virgio app will use the latest mobile app technologies to showcase these trends and styles in an interactive mode, bringing the true joy of online shopping to consumers. 

“Traditionally, the fashion industry has operated on depth and discount models,” says Amar Nagaram, CEO and Founder of Virgio. “At the core of Virgio is the tech foundation, which is always listening to evolving trends on social media platforms and predicting the demand for each trend. This is then fed into our agile and responsive supply chain to enable the trendiest, most elegant and yet affordable line in near real-time. Thus, Virgio is pioneering the test and scale method, making runway fashion accessible and affordable for all consumers while eliminating excess inventory for manufacturers.”

Virgio’s model has condensed the 8–10-month lead time to just one month, while its app has over 100,000 downloads. Seeing early success on its Singles’ Day sale last month, between November 11-13, Virgio offered over 2,000 new styles, the largest selection for a direct-to-consumer brand in the country, and saw ~1 million new users on the platform during the event, in addition to over 20,000 daily active users. Looking ahead, Virgio is also looking to integrate sustainable practices to address challenges associated with fashion waste. 

Investor Quotes

“There is a largely underserved market for branded apparel in India currently. For example, for women, only ~25% of fashion is branded apparel. The fashion industry in India is thus at an inflexion point, driven by changing consumer preferences as a result of social media’s influence, an important Gen-Z characteristic to individualise as a form of expression and the integration of social commerce with social media platforms. We are confident in Virgio’s tech-first model and believe the startup’s expert founding team is uniquely positioned to capture a large opportunity in India’s fashion industry,” adds Ashutosh Sharma, Head of India Investments, Prosus Ventures.

“India has a robust manufacturing base and is one of the largest exporters of textiles globally; we believe the time is ripe for this group to rapidly adopt digital practices, given that we’re coming out of the pandemic that’s accelerated tech adoption across the board. Virgio can be the change bearer, and with their background, they also understand Gen Z & millennial consumers to be able to provide a new, real-time way to shop for fashion. Virgio connects these dots in a meaningful way in aspects such as consumer adoption and supply chain. We are excited to be early backers of Virgio, Amar and his team,” adds Subrata Mitra, Partner at Accel.

Previous angel investments include, Mukesh Bansal, Kunal shah, Binny Bansal, Bhavesh Agarwal, Vidit Aatrey, Saif Ali Khan, Sriharsha Majety, Mekin Maheswari, Sameer Nigam, Reddy Ventures and Viko Ventures.

Boilerplate

About Prosus:

Prosus is a global consumer internet group and one of the largest technology investors in the world. Operating and investing globally in markets with long-term growth potential, Prosus builds leading consumer internet companies that empower people and enrich communities.

The group is focused on building meaningful businesses in the online classifieds, food delivery, payments and fintech, and education technology sectors in markets including India and Brazil. Through its ventures team, Prosus invests in areas including health, logistics, blockchain, and social commerce. Prosus actively seeks new opportunities to partner with exceptional entrepreneurs who are using technology to improve people’s everyday lives.

Every day, billions of customers use the products and services of companies that Prosus has invested in, acquired or built, including 99minutos,  Airmeet, Aruna, AutoTrader, Autovit.ro, Azos, BandLab, Bibit, Bilt, Biome Makers, Borneo, Brainly, BUX, BYJU'S, Bykea, Captain Fresh, Codecademy, Collective Benefits, Creditas, DappRadar, DeHaat, Detect Technologies, dott, EduMe, ElasticRun, eMAG, Endowus, Eruditus, EVERY, Facily, Flink, Foodics, Good Glamm Group, GoodHabitz, GoStudent, Honor, iFood, Imovirtual, Klar, Kovi, LazyPay, letgo, Luno, Mensa Brands, Meesho, merXu, Movile, Oda, OLX, Otodom, OTOMOTO, Oxford Ionics, PaySense, PayU, Pharmeasy, Platzi, Property24, Quick Ride, Red Dot Payment, Republic, Sharebite, Shipper, ShopUp, SoloLearn, Stack Overflow, Standvirtual, Superside, Swiggy, Thndr, Tonik, Ula, Urban Company, Vegrow, Virgio, watchTowr, and Wayflyer.

Hundreds of millions of people have made the platforms of Prosus’s associates a part of their daily lives. For listed companies where we have an interest, please see: Tencent, Delivery Hero, Remitly, Trip.com, Udemy, Skillsoft, and SimilarWeb.

Today, Prosus companies and associates help improve the lives of more than two billion people around the world.

Prosus has a primary listing on Euronext Amsterdam (AEX:PRX) and secondary listings on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (XJSE:PRX) and a2X Markets (PRX.AJ). Prosus is majority-owned by Naspers.

For more information, please visit www.prosus.com.

About Prosus

Prosus is a global consumer internet group and one of the largest technology investors in the world. Operating and investing globally in markets with long-term growth potential, Prosus builds leading consumer internet companies that empower people and enrich communities.

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