Exclusive: Online fashion rental portal Flyrobe bags fresh capital
Mumbai-based online fashion rental platform Flyrobe has raised around $3.71 million (Rs 26.06 crore at current exchange rates) in a fresh round of funding, two persons directly aware of the matter told TechCircle.
Omapal Technologies Pvt. Ltd, which operates the three-year-old venture, raised this sum from existing investors IDG Ventures and Sequoia Capital, which co-led the round. Another existing investor Tokyo-based GREE Ventures also participated in the round, one of the two persons mentioned above said.
The company is believed to have raised this sum at a post-money valuation of roughly around Rs 155 crore ($21.6 million), the other person mentioned above said.
It is not clear whether this is the firm’s Series B round of funding or if this capital raise was part of a larger investment round.
E-mail queries sent to Shreya Mishra, Pranay Surana and Tushar Saxena, co-founders of Flyrobe, did not immediately elicit a response
The company had last raised capital in August 2016. It had secured $5.3 million (Rs 35 crore then) in a Series A round led by IDG Ventures. GREE Ventures and Sequoia Capital had also participated in this round along with individual investors Vijay Shekhar Sharma, Paytm’s founder, and Leon Seynave, chairman of Stanhope Capital.
Back-of-the-envelope estimates by TechCircle show that the company had raised the Series A round at a post-money valuation of roughly around Rs 116-120 crore ($16.2-16.76 million).
Besides the above-mentioned investors, Flyrobe is also backed by prominent individuals such as Snapdeal founders Rohit Bansal and Kunal Bahl, FreeCharge founders Sandeep Tandon and Kunal Shah, Powai Lake Ventures and Toppr founder Zishaan Hayath and former Temasek executive Abhishek Jain.
The startup was founded in September 2015 by IIT Bombay alumni Mishra, Surana (chief operating officer) and Saxena (chief technology officer).
Prior to co-founding the startup, Mishra worked at Everstone Capital, while Surana was with Deutsche Bank and Saxena was the CTO with Triptainment Technologies.
The online platform offers an array of fashion wear for both men and women on rent. Rentals on the platform are categorised into style, designers, collection and occasion. Customers can choose from an array of options and get their preferred piece of clothing delivered to their doorstep.
Flyrobe also operates offline stores—two in Mumbai and one each at Delhi, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Pune and Ludhiana, according to information available on its site.
Apart from the aforementioned options, Flyrobe also offers some value-added services to customers. Flyrobe Prime is a personalised offering where users can be the first to rent out designer wear that is made-to-measure for them specifically. For a fixed rental sum, users can keep the piece for up to 90 days.
Another offering Flyrobe Select allows customers to purchase new clothes from select offline stores and brands with a buyback guarantee. Currently, as per information available on its website, Flyrobe has tied up with ten such stores in Delhi and Mumbai, with more such stores in the offing.
The startup has also recently launched a decor rental category, where users can choose from curated decor styles and rent them for anywhere between four to eight days.
For the financial year 2016-17, the company clocked a nearly seven-fold rise in operational revenues at Rs 2.06 crore, from Rs 29.73 lakh the previous year, according to data available with VCCEdge, the research platform of News Corp VCCircle.
Gross expenditures also saw a three-fold rise at Rs 19.89 crore from Rs 5.98 crore the previous year. Rising employee and marketing costs contributed to the increase in expenditure.
Consequently, losses widened to Rs 16.72 crore, up from Rs 5.53 crore in the previous year.
Deals in the space
The broader online fashion space has seen some significant deal activity lately.
Earlier this month, Noida-based Modestreet Internet Pvt. Ltd, an online omnichannel fashion shopping and discovery platform, raised an undisclosed sum of angel investment from Anshika Aggarwal, a chartered accountant and EY executive.
Around the same time, GAIA Bespoke, an omnichannel platform for made-to-measure western womenswear, also raised an undisclosed amount in pre-Series A funding from angel investor Sanjib Jha, former chief executive of venture debt provider IntelleGrow.
Last month, TechCircle had reported that Wooplr Technologies Pvt. Ltd, which enables social commerce via an eponymous online fashion portal, was in talks to raise up to $20 million (Rs 137.89 crore at current exchange rates) in a Series C round of funding.
In April this year, Mumbai-based online fashion marketplace Fynd, run by Shopsense Technologies Pvt. Ltd, closed its Series C round of funding led by tech giant Google.
In the same month, Myntra, the fashion and lifestyle e-tailing arm of e-commerce major Flipkart, bought Bengaluru-based wearable tech startup Witworks Consumer Technologies Pvt. Ltd for an undisclosed amount.