Shouto Funding: Fashion discovery startup Shouto is raising $1.6 million in funding from Saama Capital and others.

fashion discovery startup Shoto claimed to have raised $1.6 million in funding led by Saama Capital. Board Capital, Google veteran and former search chief Amit Singhal, Arjun Vaidya, founder of Dr. vaidya and 25 directly to the consumer (D2C) the founding angels participated in the funding.

Shoto was founded by a former MintraAjio and Amazon executives Maruti Ramgandi, Abhishek Handa and Ayyappan Lakshmanan, respectively.

Shouto aims to be Gen-Z’s fashion discovery destination in Tier 1 cities.

“The undermining or massive explosion of D2C brands is a lot of confusion for consumers,” Ramgandy told ET. “You have five large marketplaces, about 63-65 fashion brands, 40 of which are funded. Any fashion request or need you come across, you will have options. There is a lot of clutter that creates the need for a platform for discovery.”

He said that discovering fashion for young Indians is harder than it is for millennials or the older generation.

“What categories are they looking for? These are mainly new age categories – streetwear, sportswear, plus-size, eco-friendly, conscious clothing and casual wear for work. If you go to some of these marketplaces – Myntra, Ajio – they don’t take care of the new age nuances.”

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The company will use social media influencers on platforms such as Instagram and Pinterest to curate and promote products through interactive commerce such as live or video commerce.

Ramganidi compares Shouto to the US LTK, which was valued at more than $2 billion after raising about $300 million from SoftBank’s vision fund.

The firm will invest capital in product development, recruiting and engaging authors, and building a team of engineers and writer success managers, the company said in a statement.

Ramgandy said the company will not build inventory and direct audiences to the respective brands’ websites. This is at the heart of Shouto’s business model as it will generate revenue per click and sales. He is already associated with Zara, H&M, Damensch, Urbanic and other brands.

“We are seeing social and creator-focused merchant startups gain momentum in other markets, especially in the US,” said Ash Lilani, Managing Partner at Saama. “Shoto aims to combine both of these approaches to create a fashion trend for young Indians. Their talented leadership team, ambitious vision and unique partnerships with leading fashion brands provide a solid foundation for success.”

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