Why the next unicorn will most probably be from the fashion tech space

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The Fashion tech space has been heating up for some time now in India and has reached a stage which will see high growth for startups in this space. The best thing about this Fashion tech startup ecosystem is that they are not competing into the already crowded fashion e-commerce space. As a founder of a Fashion tech startup, I believe that India will be the next Unicorn from the Fashion Tech space. There is a huge growth potential and opportunity to generate high top-line revenue & profitability by startups. Technology is going to be a big driver for business growth, efficacy and profitability for companies/brands in the Fashion industry and the associated fields, thus the startups excelling in this field are going to be the Unicorns.

The fashion business market is currently valued at more than 1 trillion dollars globally and growing exponentially. This industry has more than 45 different categories of business.

The industry is alsoon a forefront of adopting Social-Digital media & using it to the best of ways for consumer engagement and business growth. They are also very open to adopting and encouraging disruptive services/products being offered by startups. Fashion weeks which act as an epicentre of business of fashion are adopting newer technologies to keep them self at par with other tech events and also use the same to keep designers and buyers more intimate.

Startups aiming to reach the Unicorn landmark should focus on certain aspects in order to attain growth which primarily include:

Fashion Talent Marketplace: “Water water everywhere not a drop to drink”.

The fashion industry is one of the biggest employers in India, however it is seen to be highly fragmented. The industry is doing well in terms of business but there are very few platforms that allow structure and a marketplace approach to help the industry get best of talent for their fashion projects or any fashion PR campaign.

Virtualisation: “Stop settling for dress shirts that look great on hangers and not on you.”

Fashion industry is slowly adopting virtualisation & Virtual Reality to help accelerate their growth in the market, reduce the turn around time and improve customer engagement. Virtualisation solutions are intuitive that allows users to visually build any fashion garment / product in real time using high tools, fashion intelligence and machine learning that helps designers & fashion companies to solve key issues like - product sampling, fittings, product variants and adoptability.

Fashion Event Management Applications:
“It's technology that makes both ends meet”

Fashion Shows and events are more complex than any conference or a technology event. A fashion week involves multiple partners, stakeholders, various participant categories and invitees. Introduction of an end to end application which would help in taking care of coordination, operation and communication with ease and mobility would be solving a big technology gap in the industry. These fashion applications can also be used as a great tool to do targeted marketing and to launch ramp-to-rack concepts.

(This article has been authored by Amit Bhardwaj, Co-founder and COO, 6Degree, which is one of India's first fashion talent and tech startup. Amit has a background of business and product management from Tata Teleservices, where he managed the next generation enterprise solutions for the brand. An MBA from Symbiosis Institute of Telecom Management)

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