Bengaluru-based fashion startup Virgio has raised $37 million in a series A funding round led by Prosus Ventures, Accel, and Alpha Wave. It is said that the startup is an Indian adaptation of the Chinese fast-fashion retailer Shein, which the Indian government banned.
The firm uses a consumer-to-manufacturing methodology to supply Gen Z consumers with quick fashion trends. The company will use the additional funding to upgrade its technology and bolster its staff across all business verticals.
Amar Nagaram, CEO and founder of Virgio and the previous CEO of Myntra, claimed that the fashion sector has traditionally operated on depth and discount models.
“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, 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,” he added.
Virgio condenses the typical lead time of eight to ten months to just one
Virgio, founded in 2022, uses technology throughout the design, manufacturing, and purchasing processes to streamline the entire fashion lifecycle and enable a real-time fashion offering. Following the Series A funding, the one-year-old startup is valued at $161 million (post-money).
Ashutosh Sharma, head of India investments at Prosus Ventures, added, “The fashion industry in India is at an inflection point, driven by changing consumer preferences because of social media’s influence, an important Gen-Z characteristic to individualize 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,” he added.
Virgio has an extensive collection of ethnic, party, and casual clothing. It expands its range weekly, offering customers huge discounts and free shipping. According to the startup, its full-stack strategy has reduced the usual lead time from eight to ten months to only one month.
Subrata Mitra, partner, Accel, mentioned that 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 and millennial consumers to be able to provide a new, real-time way to shop for fashion, Mitra added. It claimed that more than 100,000 people have already downloaded its app.