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Contxto – Fashion marketplace houpa is looking sharp! The startup recently raised R$12 million (around US$2.3 million) with unnamed investors. The funds will be directed towards improving its services as well as expanding within its native Brazil.
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Strut your stuff, houpa
houpa works as a social media site for fashionistas. Users can make their profile and start sifting through articles of clothing to build their virtual closet. Likewise, in Tinder-like fashion, users on houpa can swipe right or left to build digital outfits. The snazzier the getup, the more followers a user gains.
At the moment, it says it has over 20,000 active users, but hopes to end the year with 1 million.
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But social media isn’t houpa’s only forte.
Wholesale fashion brands are also present and users can interact with them. If a person really, really, really wants a shirt they saw on houpa, they can buy it directly through the platform. The Brazilian startup for its part arranges the delivery.
Meanwhile, businesses benefit from letting the startup handle the logistics of online shopping. Not to mention gives them visibility with consumers. Moreover, houpa works with artificial intelligence (AI) to give vendors data-based insights on their shoppers’ habits.
Data and sales? No wonder houpa is a hit with investors.
A niche market
With the rise in e-commerce, a marketplace tiered specifically for the fashion industry may sit well with those after the latest trends—but who are fond of the traditional shopping experience.
Houpa achieves this by, for example, tackling the eternal dilemma of “the outfit looks great on the model in the picture. But will it look just as well on me?” Through its “Guide Shop” feature, users can try out an outfit at their local retailer and if they like it, order it through the app and skip the line for the cash register.
Startups like houpa are erasing the borders between online and offline experiences to get the best of both worlds.
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