Mallzee, a Scottish startup that bills itself as a “Tinder for fashion”, has revealed that they have obtained 2.5 million pounds in backing from a group of new and current investors that includes the Royal Mail Group, Scottish Investment Bank, Par Equity, and several private investors. The startup, which launched in 2013, says that they now have 3.1 million pounds in total funding. Boosted by this latest deal, Mallzee says that they intend to further innovate in the m-commerce space and scale the business up to reach a global audience.
It can be a risky move to turn down an investment offer, but this startup did just that when founder and CEO Cally Russell turned down an offer of 75K pounds on Dragons’ Den, a BBC program on which entrepreneurs pitch their ideas to investors. Even though they did not take up that funding offer, Mallzee has revealed that their appearance on the show was nonetheless a success, as it provided exposure that delivered them hundreds of thousands of new users and numerous investment opportunities.
As you would expect from a “Tinder-style” service, Mallzee allows users to set their fashion requirements and then browse through a variety of choices, including more than 2 million items from more than 100 major retailers, by swiping right if they are interested in a particular piece and left if they wish to keep going. The service, available for Android and iOS, is free to users, as Mallzee has opted to take a commission on sales that they generate and through fees from retailers who list on the platform. Going forward, Russell says that they are also planning to roll out a tool that will offer retailers insight into which items they should be putting in stock and marketing.
This investment is not the only major news that Mallzee has announced this year, as they previously revealed that they have partnered with Samsung, which has resulted in the fashion service being promoted in Samsung’s App Store, My Galaxy, and a number of other channels.
Regarding users, Mallzee reports that they have “hundreds of thousands” of users in 125 countries and that have hit top-100 lists for apps in 48 countries.