Venture Catalysts backs kidswear brand Cub McPaws

Venture Catalysts backs kidswear brand Cub McPaws
Photo Credit: 123RF.com
20 Dec, 2019

Online retailer for kids clothing Cub McPaws has raised an undisclosed amount from Mumbai-based startup incubator Venture Catalysts. The stage of the investment has not been revealed.

The Mumbai-based brand, run and operated by parent entity Pochemuchka Kids, uses augmented reality-enabled technology via smartphone apps to make a clothing line dubbed MagicTshirts interactive in nature. It also sells Terra, a chemical-free organic line of wardrobe for children 4-12 years of age.

“The investment from Venture Catalysts will help us launch new product lines, scale our distribution capabilities and enhance our cutting-edge technology offering. We plan to expand our customer base by reaching out to 200,000 additional customers over the coming months. We will also conduct hiring to on-board senior professionals who will help us drive growth and brand building,” Kinnar Shah, co-founder at Cub McPaws said in a statement Thursday.

Previously, Cub McPaws raised capital from Pepperfry founder and CEO Ambareesh Murty, Venture Catalysts co-founder Anuj Golecha, and a Frost & Sullivan Japan partner Robin Joffe, the statement said without disclosing details on the funds raised so far.

The business to consumer platform focuses on premium and comfortable merchandise for children born after 2010, it added in the statement. 

Cub McPaws was founded in 2018 by Shah and Abhay Bhat, two former Pepperfry colleagues. Bhat is an MBA graduate from Oxford University with 15 years of global work experience. He was a Strategic Project manager at the online furniture company, whereas Shah, a chartered accountant by profession headed finance there.

“We have also recently focused our attention to start-ups emerging within the tech space, considering the immense prospects of the domain. Cub McPaws lies at the very intersection of our focus group and we hope this association will help them build the fastest growing AR clothing organization in India. The market is still untapped and considering Cub McPaws’s stellar offering, I believe they can be the leaders in this space in a very short span,” Apoorv Ranjan Sharma, another co-founder at Venture Catalysts said.

Venture Catalysts invests funds ranging from $250,000 to $1.5 million in early-stage startups, through its combination of capital, mentorship and business network. 

In the last month alone, in two separate fundraises, the firm’s venture capital fund backed prescription digitisation company WonDRx and deep-tech computer vision and augmented reality (AR) startup peAR Technologies.

Kidswear market in India

The kidswear market in India stands at $12 billion in 2019, and is expected to grow at a CAGR (compound annual growth rate) of 8-9% in the next five years, Associate Vice President at the retail, consumer products division of management consulting firm Technopak, Madhulika Tiwari told TechCircle.

A major chunk of the market is unorganised, said CubMcPaws. The company claims to have registered a robust 12x revenue growth in less than a year.

Pune-based Brainbees Solutions, which operates omnichannel horizontal of children, baby products FirstCry is a well-funded player in the vertical of kidswear. Last month, it acquired Oi Playschool, in a new spin-off business interest in the education sector.