Fits like a glove: Online shopping tool attracting overseas venture funds

Danish startup Fitbay secures sizeable funding from overseas investors

June 13th, 2014 8:24 am| by admin
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The American venture capital fund Steadfast Venture Capital and the Swedish fund Creandum, which includes Spotify in its portfolio, have together invested 12 million kroner in Fitbay, a company founded by a group of Copenhagen entrepreneurs, reports Børsen business newspaper.

Fitbay is a service that allows users to shop online for clothes based on their personalised body shape and size, which is designed to make online clothes shopping easier.

Great potential
Christian Wylonis, the co-founder and head of Fitbay, described to Børsen the company’s progress so far and its short term targets. “We have been through a massive growth curve since we launched our beta version in March,” he said.

“Now we’ve received capital to go full blast for the next 12 to 18 months and we have a mission to have 1 million users within a year. So at the moment, the focus on being profitable comes in second place.”

These latest investments bring the total funding secured up to 14 million kroner. The founder of Just Eat, Jesper Buch, is among those who got in on the ground floor. Børsen estimates the company’s value at 60-80 million kroner.

The new investors see great potential in Fitbay. It has international reach, with 40 percent of its registered users from the USA. The service targets a problem that online retailers face: namely paying the postage of clothes returned because they're the wrong size.

Martin Hauge, a general partner at Creandum, explained to Børsen his interest in the startup. “We are extremely impressed by their traction, and the interest in their new app shows that there is a big demand for their solution,” he said.

Challenges ahead
“It’s a big investment Steadfast has come with so early in the process, and that’s also one of the reasons we’re staying involved. And it they reach their goal, I think we’ll be looking at a new round of investment in 12 to 18 months.”

Wylonis sees the next step for Fitbay as being to expand its staff. “And then we’re facing a lot of challenges,” he said.

“One thing is scaling up our userbase. We also have to show that we can get people to return. We have a goal that 70 percent of users visit us at least once a week. And then we have to show that, in time, we can earn money from Fitbay.” 

(All photos: Ella Navarro)
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