Stage3, a fashion-rental and styling platform, on Wednesday said it has raised $2 million in a Pre-Series A funding round.
The funding round was led by Blume Ventures, and highlighted the strong interest of investors in India’s growing fashion rental market.
The funds will be utilized to amplify the brand experience, boost its offline footprint and augment its data capabilities. Stage3 also plans to collaborate with several prominent celebrities, influencers and designers within the coming year to add to its extensive network.
According to the company, Stage 3 has registered a strong revenue growth of 350% YoY and high engagement metrics, further reinforcing the investors’ decision. The company has consistently recorded high repeat rates and unit economics. Its asset light model with revenue share inventory is another advantage, accounting for 80% of its current inventory.
Founded in 2016 by Sabena Puri, Sanchit Baweja and Rina Dhaka, the company was envisioned to make glamorous fashion affordable, sustainable and, most importantly, easily accessible to Indian consumers.
While the company makes expensive designer wear available at a fraction of the price through a rental business model, it also sells capsule collections of “elevated basics" via its home-grown fashion brand “Alaya", by leveraging collective purchase trends and data insights from customers.
Commenting on the investment, Baweja, CBO and co-founder said, “We are excited that Blume Ventures has extended their support to us to add to our strong ecosystem of investors and advisors, including Nisha Kumar, Ex-CFO, Rent the Runway and Anaita Adajania Shroff, Fashion Director, Vogue India. Our growth is going to be omni-channel and data-driven. We plan to invest heavily in enhancing our data capabilities as well as focus on building greater awareness amongst our target audiences about the rental model we are operating with."
Speaking on the funding, Karthik Reddy, Managing Partner, Blume Ventures said, “We’ve known Stage3 and its founders for a few years now. We love their commitment to the model and its ability to take aspirational brands and designs from great designers and luxury wardrobes to a growing mass of aspirational consumers. Rental culture and recycling or reuse is here to stay as youth understand wastage more than the last generation or two. By providing choice, convenience and prices that special occasions demand in their lives, Stage3 is providing coolness with sustainability in the new India."