The what-to-wear anxiety is a feeling that most of us have experienced at one point or another. Luckily, tools like Instagram and Pinterest come to the rescue. Following favourite brands, fashion magazines or style icons, we get instant ideas for great outfits that match our individual tastes and styles.
But what if apart from getting inspiration you could also get clothing you like directly into your wardrobe, just with a click of a button? Norwegian startup Villoid (formerly known as Sobazaar) has made this possible – an original Instagram-like app allows users to purchase items directly.
Inspired by the shopping universe of New York’s SoHo, Villiod’s co-founder Jeanette Dyhre Kvisvik launched the app for the first time in Norway about a year ago. Backed by Telenor, a Norwegian telecom company and Schibsted Media Group, a global online media company, the numbers proved that Jeanette’s idea was spot-on: the app was downloaded by 25% of all females in the age group of 15-22 in less than 9 months, in a Norwegian test market. Such a promising start laid some serious expectations for Villoid’s global appearance and rightly so.
A large-scale international launch took place just a few weeks ago during the New York fashion week, also presenting Alexa Chang as one of the co-founders. Jeanette’s strategic move to partner up with the renowned fashion model was kept a secret. So it’s not at all surprising that Alexa Chang’s Instagram announcement the launch of her new secret project, making an instant strong impression on her 2 million followers on the network. The announcement also caught the attention of some major media giants such as Elle, Huffington Post and Forbes.
In the past couple of weeks Villoid has had so many downloads that the service even crashed a few times. Since Chang started promoting the app, about 10,000 new boards were being made every day, where users can pin liked items and potentially buy them. The business model at Villoid is built on commission from sales, advertising and other beneficial deals with brands.