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Farfech the marketplace for luxury brands has named 11 startups working with technologies including virtual reality and artificial intelligence to join is inaugural accelerator class.
Through its accelerator program Dream Assembly that was launched in April this year, Farfetch will offer all the chosen businesses a 12-week programme of workshops, one-to-one sessions with Farfetch senior leaders, and mentorship meetings covering topics including e-commerce, marketing, technology, fashion, logistics and operations.
In addition, the start-ups who were all chosen for their work exploring ways of applying technology to revolutionise the future of commerce, will also have direct access to Farfetch’s expertise in the luxury fashion and technology industries, as well as networking opportunities to “relevant contacts” within the fashion industry, like partner Burberry, who will offer knowledge and resources to the start-ups.
The 11 startups come from the UK, Canada, Turkey, Hong Kong, France, Portugal, the US, Nigeria, and the Netherlands, and they are working on technology including an app for shoes, a real-time inventory device and analytics software for luxury brands. They include:
Auverture (Netherlands – a designer fine jewellery destination.
Buy Buddy (Turkey) – has created a smart shopping device that provides real-time inventory.
Didim (Portugal) – a leading creator of high-fidelity digital humans.
Fashpa (Nigeria) – a global marketplace for African fashion and design.
Ftsy ‘footsy’ (Canada) – an app that makes shopping for shoes online easy and fun by using AI and a smartphone to scans a user’s feet to curate a personalised footwear collection.
Reckon.ai (Portugal) – uses computer vision to collect relevant information from websites, catalogues and social media to create a platform where retailers could easily monitor their competition.
Shopvious (France) – aims at giving luxury brands access to the most reliable and actionable analytics through a new ground-breaking data source.
The Restory (UK) – a technology-powered luxury restoration brand using proprietary technology and data to engage directly and deeply with customers.
Upteam (China) – is a data driven B2B pre-owned luxury bag and accessory curator, supplying authentic items to both online and offline shops across 30 different countries.
Villageluxe (USA) – adopts the same ethos as Airbnb by promoting the sharing economy revolution with peer to peer and sustainable luxury fashion.
Wishi (USA) – aims to connect people with online personal stylists.
“We were delighted by the response from so many incredible companies. The companies we have selected for the first Dream Assembly cohort all have great potential to present innovative solutions and are capable of shaping the future of commerce,” said Stephanie Phair, chief strategy officer of Farfetch.
From Sept. 7, these companies will take part in a 12-week program in Lisbon from which they will be privy to one-on-one sessions with Farfetch’s senior leaders. Workshops will cover a range of themes including technology, e-commerce and fashion.
The start-ups will also take part in a one-week boot camp in San Francisco run by seed accelerator 500 Startups and have a chance to pitch to a panel of external investors during a one-day trip to London.
“We were a small start-up,” said José Neves, founder and chief executive officer of Farfetch. “Back then, I needed exposure to boutiques, brands and customers to try my service, and I needed technology support and mentoring.
“We believe that the whole luxury fashion industry, including Farfetch, can benefit from helping to support the next generation of technology companies dedicated to shaping the future of e-commerce,” he added.
That’s not the only good thing happening with Farfetch. The British online luxury fashion platform recently filed a public initial offering of shares with the U.S. stock exchange, an IPO analysts argue would value the company at around $6 billion. Farfetch is thus posed to head the list of September’s IPOs when it starts to trade on the New York Stock Exchange.