London Thread, a personalized menswear styling and ecommerce Raised $22 million in Series B funding
Thread, the pioneering personalised menswear styling and ecommerce service, today announced $22 million in additional funding and added 50 new brand partners to its range.
The Series B funding round came from Balderton Capital, Beringea, Forward Partners, and H&M group’s investment arm H&M CO:LAB, with participation from noted retail investor Maurice Helfgott, and former Lane Crawford deputy president Sebastian Picardo. This round brings total investment in Thread to over $40 million.
Using a unique combination of AI and human stylists, Thread helps men to dress well and find the perfect clothes for them. Thread is taking market share from physical stores, as well as first generation online retailers, who overwhelm many men by offering them too many options. Founded in London by Kieran O’Neill, Ben Kucsan, and Ben Phillips in 2012, Thread was part of the Y Combinator program, which helped create industry leaders such as Airbnb and Dropbox. Its goal is to become the one-stop clothes shopping service, in the way that people use Uber to get from A to B, or Spotify to listen to music.
During the last year, Thread has signed partnerships with 50 additional partners. New brands include Barbour, Hugo Boss, Levi’s and Ted Baker, as well as emerging labels such as Wax London, Kestin Hare and The Workers Club. The company, which employs around 100 people, now has over a million users. A quarter of Thread customers now do all of their clothes shopping on Thread and the average customer is in their late twenties to early forties.
Three new executives have recently joined the business, including David Scott, previously Operations Director at Deliveroo, Rachel Sheridan, previously Chief Product Officer and Trading Director at WorldStores, and Tim Grimsditch, previously VP Marketing at Kano Computing and Marketing Director at Spotify. Thread will use the funding to continue expanding its artificial intelligence team, as well as growing the brand into a household name.
Kieran O’Neill, CEO and co-founder, said: “More than ever, guys care about dressing well, which is why menswear is a growing market. But they face an overwhelming number of options on the High Street and online. We’re used to having digital services such as Uber, Netflix and Spotify simplify other aspects of our lives, and men are now turning to Thread as their go-to solution for dressing well. As our stylists and algorithms learn more about our customers, we’ve brought on a huge number of new brands to help each of our customers find the perfect clothes for them.”
“Since the beginning of Thread we have always built the service in collaboration with our customers. We’re obsessive about understanding their needs, and have worked closely with customers to craft the experience. We feel lucky that this has resulted in a very loyal, engaged customer base.”
How Thread works
Thread asks customers a few questions about their style, size, budget, including which brands they like and their preferred style. Customers are then matched with a personal stylist who works with powerful artificial intelligence algorithms to recommend the perfect set of clothes for them. Each user gets a completely unique set of ideas, tailored to their appearance and preferences. Customers can also browse an online store containing just clothes that suit them. Thread learns every time you interact with products, so the recommendations and store get better and better each time you use it.
Thread is backed by some of the world’s leading investors in fashion and artificial intelligence, including DeepMind co-founders Demis Hassabis and Mustafa Suleyman, Y Combinator and Andrew Jennings, the former President of Saks Fifth Avenue .
Founded in 2012, Thread’s mission is to help every person feel happier and more self-confident by making it easy to dress well. By combining the expertise of human stylists with the power of machine learning algorithms, Thread provides personalised style recommendations to millions of men, distilling endless choices from hundreds of brands down to items perfect for each individual. Thread’s recommendations are free, and customers can purchase any item seamlessly through the service.