Sweden-based startup Virtusize that has created a clothes-fitting solution for e-commerce websites, has been bought for €11 million by a group of Japanese investors, including Yahoo Japan Capital, Ideos Venture Cap fund, D4V, and a textile giant Toyoshima. The buyers will also invest an additional €700,000 in the company.
Founded in 2011, Virtusize has raised about €4 million, excluding the current round. The company provides a way for online clothes stores' customers to check whether a listed garment would fit by either comparing it to a previous purchase or measuring a favourite item at home. The company has already partnered with 45 retailers in Japan, including Acne, Uniqlo, Balenciaga, and New Balance.
"In Asia, the standard way [of checking the clothes' fit] is to compare the item you are looking to buy with an item that already fits you well (retailers in Asia, therefore, display the individual measurements on each style)," said Gustaf Tunhammar, the founder and CEO of Virtusize, explaining the growing traction Virtusize has gained in Asia.
"Whereas, in Europe and the US, the traditional way of size recommendations starts off with your body (i.e. you measure your body and based on your body measurements you are recommended a size). Virtusize has refined and developed [its] product around the Asian way, rather than the European way. As a consequence Asians tend to feel more familiar with our products. [...] My guess is that Europe and the US will follow; it will just take a bit longer."
Virtusize states that its solution is already available on some 20 percent of the Japanese e-commerce market for clothing. It also claims to have been profitable across all markets it's present on since 2017. In Sweden, it also claims to have a "large number" of clients among clothing brands and retailers.
As the company moves to the Japanese investors, the current CEO Gustaf Tunhamaar will step down from his role to become the head of product. The current market manager for Asia, Andreas Olausson, is to become the new CEO and steer Virtusize's Asian expansion.
On the featured image, from left: Gustaf Tunhammar (co-founder), Peder Stubert (co-founder), Andreas Olausson (the new CEO), Erik Ekstrand (co-founder)