FabAlley, the leading online fast fashion brand has raised Series A round of funding of US$ 2 million from India Quotient, angel investors Tushar Singh, Ranjan Sharma, FAO Ventures as well as the Indian Angel Network (IAN). This is FabAlley’s second round of funding, having raised their seed round from IAN in the latter half of 2013.
FabAlley will be utilising these funds to expand offline, open EBOs, enhance their product category and build a stronger brand by tying up with designers, celebrities and curating designer collaborated lines.
Co-founder, FabAlley, Tanvi Malik told Indiaretailing Bureau: “With this round of funding we will be working on three focus areas; first being offline expansion, we currently have 25 stores live with Central and another 45 in the pipeline. We also plan to enter other large format chains along with starting our own exclusive brand outlets in the next 18 months.”
“The second focus area will be product expansion and growing our two sub brands. Currently, FabAlley has over 3,000 SKUs and has recently launched sub brands- Curve (fashionable clothing for plus size women) and Indya (an Indo-western fusion collection) at affordable prices. In the near future, we will add other categories such as fitness wear, swimwear and lingerie to our portfolio,” she said.
“Finally, we will be ramping up marketing and brand building initiatives, focusing on strategic tie-ups and endorsements to reach out to a larger customer base in India,” she added.
While FabAlley is planning to expand their western and fusion wear segment, the brand has no plans to enter into men’s wear category at least for next 18 months.
Omnichannel – The Key to Success
In July 2016, FabAlley ventured into the offline segment through a tie-up with Central chain – a multi-brand store operated by the Future Group.
Currently, they have outlets in cities like Gurgaon, Noida, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Patna and Ahmedabad to give their customers a touch-and-feel experience through interactive shop-in-shops, displaying FabAlley’s newest and best-selling apparel.
“Offline is a much larger segment also offline gives a lot of reach to the brand, so when you are present with 100 stores across India, it is much easier to reach out to customers and once they try you they shift online. That is the trend that we have seen. So that is why we have started offline retail as well,” said Co-founder FabAlley, Shivani Poddar.
The exclusive brand outlets that the brand will be opening over the period of next 18 months will be digitally integrated to their online channel.
According to Shivani, “Area wise, the size of the exclusive brand outlets will be anywhere between 600 sq.ft. to 800 sq.ft. These stores will be digitally integrated to the online channel with USP being the digital screens where customers can order offline and pick up online and vice versa. Apart from this, we will also have selfie zones where customers can click themselves wearing an outfit and share it on social media.”
Weaving A Success Story
The brand that sells 1,700 – 1,800 units per day has added a lot of personalisation features on its online platform as it adds a lot in terms of customer value. The brand has a fashion blog where a stylist gives an advice and a live chat feature where a customer can ask the stylist what to wear on a particular occasion. However, the brand feels customisation of a product is difficult to do at this stage and scale and even has no plans to integrate in the near future.
But still, FabAlley’s differentiated products and offerings and providing quality product at reasonable pricing has helped in building the investor’s confidence in the brand over the years.
“Indian fashion e-commerce has a lot of curators and aggregators but very few Indian brands. FabAlley is already a leading brand and we believe that with this investment they would be able to scale up rapidly. The founding team has executed with sharp focus on the right metrics and has shown great promise of building a premium online brand for women,” said Partner, India Quotient, Madhukar Sinha.
On course towards becoming India’s foremost leading fast fashion brand, the company is growing year on year at 100 per cent. This growth trajectory has led FabAlley to a profitable H1 2016-17.
Elaborating on the future plans Shivani Poddar said, “For the coming year, we will focus on an effective execution strategy to expand FabAlley’s geographical footprint and capitalize on the large opportunities in the online space ahead of us. We are on track to hit Rs 100 crore in GMV in 2017-18 and will continue to focus on building a profitable and sustainable business in the long term.”
The high-street fashion brand that currently delivers to around 9,000 pincodes, plans to open there exclusive brand outlets in metro cities during the first phase and then tap the Tier II cities as 55-60 per cent of their revenue comes from metro cities.
“Most of the expansion will continue to happen online for us. And apart from that we will be looking forward to open 150 more shop-in-shops in other large format stores by the end of next year,” revealed Shivani.
Cashing on Festivities
Just like other e-tailers, FabAlley is leaving no stone unturned to tap the potential customer this festive season by providing products at discounted prices.
Shivani said, “This festive season, we are offering an extensive Indian collection catering to customers who are looking for options for occasions like Diwali party, dandiya and others. Apart from this, we are also offering discounts. We have recently concluded our pre-Diwali sale where we offered a flat 35 per cent off on the entire website.”
She further added, “We will be again organising a few more pre-Diwali sales.”