14 April, 2016, India: Hippily, a shopping personalization app for fashion, targeted at young women in India, has raised US $250 K in seed funding from a group of high-profile angel investors across India, USA and Singapore. The angels include Dr. Sridhar Ramaswamy– senior VP, Ads & Commerce at Google and Rakesh Mathur – Founder of Junglee.
The company is founded by Dr. Viswanath Ramachandran (B.Tech. Computer Science & Engineering, IIT Bombay and Ph.D. Computer Science, Brown University) and Prajakt Deolasee (B.E., co-founder Snapstick, exited to Rovi Corporation). The duo previously worked together at GupShup where Dr. Ramachandran was co-founder & COO Sanchita Ghoshroy (MBA, IIM Cal), from a Fashion Management and Marketing background is on the team as CMO.
This free app offers daily curation of trendy fashion products, looks and collections to the style conscious young women, which is also available for purchase. The curation is purely style centric, bringing unique, emerging fashion online. It also has a quirky feed section, which seems to be algorithmically personalized by the user’s shopping behavior and social connections. The stores section of the app has over 30 stores that are tied up as partners with Hippily.
“The philosophy behind Hippily is to de-addict the fashion ecosystem from discounts by providing the user a personalized feed that learns from dozens of data points and gets better daily. We’re seeing intense engagement and repeat purchases from a core audience, and over 50 per cent of our orders are for undiscounted products, proving the robustness of our approach. We’re now increasing our investment in the personalization engine by hiring a dedicated machine learning & data sciences team with a world class academic advising us,” Dr. Ramachandran, CEO said.
Manish Mahajan (CEO of Singapore based investment firm Mount Nathan), angel investor in Hippily said, “I have been associated with Hippily from the very beginning and the robustness of their platform dealing with multiple fashion retailers along with their user personalization, is market leading. Overlay this with the vast but razor sharp creative canvas of their curation methodology and you’ve got a product that can provide Indian women with their own unique fashion.”
Mobile shopping behavior nearly tripled last year, according to Yahoo-owned mobile analytics company Flurry. This surge of activity means more brands are looking for ways to engage potential buyers outside of their own mobile apps and websites. Twitter recently launched a ‘buy’ button to allow users to make purchases via the social network. Facebook and Pinterest are also reportedly launching similar buttons. In addition to Hippily, a number of fashion apps such as Wooplr, Roposo, Voonik and others in India have been funded in the last year.