Axios Pro Exclusive Content

Shoptrue sizes up Series A

Photo courtesy of Shoptrue

Shoptrue, a New York-based fashion marketplace launching Tuesday, will raise its Series A round in the first half of next year, CEO Romney Evans tells Axios.

  • Though he declined to share a precise target, Evans says that a Series A for a company in Shoptrue's category could range between $6 million and $30 million.

Why it matters: Retail startups that blur the line between retail and media, with products increasingly playing the role of content, continue to emerge.

Of note: Evans co-founded True Fit, where he was chief product and marketing officer until last year and remains an adviser.

What they're saying: "With this one, it's really about trying to tackle the largest opportunity in apparel, which is around fashion discovery," Evans says.

  • "There's this opportunity to go earlier in the funnel and affect discovery in a way that routes people to items where they are more likely to have successful experiences," he says.
  • And the marketplace model helps Shoptrue "work across lots of brands and retailers and be a powerful partner and ally to them," Evans adds.

Yes, but: AI has the power to enhance every part of the shopping journey, Evans says, noting that selection can be overwhelming, but "algorithms don’t buy clothes, people do," he says.

  • It can't replace that "moment of serendipity" when a consumer connects with a product.

The intrigue: Giving users the ability to build their own personalized collections and shops opens up the possibility to bring in guest fashion designers, celebrities and brands, says Brandon Holley, chief fashion officer.

  • The ability to build shops, which will be released in Q1 of 2023, will fill the merchandising aspect, the art over the science part of e-commerce historically has not done as good a job, she says.

Flashback: Shoptrue raised a seed round of $6 million more than 12 months ago to get through the beta phase.

The bottom line: Shoptrue is capitalizing on several trends in online fashion.

  • An algorithm directs shoppers to ideal products and allows them to create personalized stores —  incorporating elements of both social commerce and gaming.
Go deeper