Goxip, a Hong Kong-based social shopping service, has raised US$5 million in a Series A funding round led by Chinese beauty-enhancing app developer Meitu (1357.HK), with participation from a fund controlled by Hong Kong property developer Nan Fung Group.
Apart from Nan Fung’s Mills Fabrica Fund, the list of backers included Chryseis Tan, an existing investor who is the daughter of Malaysian tycoon Vincent Tan; Sabrina Ho, daughter of Macau casino mogul Stanley Ho Hung-sun; and Iman Allana, from Indian food giant Allana Group, according to tech industry news website TechCrunch.
Goxip, an online marketplace for fashion and beauty products, enables users to purchase similar apparel worn by celebrities or influencers, and make recommendations to friends. Users can also make money when a follower clicks the link and buys the outfit in question.
Users are presented with an Instagram-style feed to find inspiration for fashion. It features artificial intelligence-powered image recognition technology, which enables users to find similar styled items sold by brands on Goxip, by simply uploading a photo of the fashion piece they are looking for.
The company claims it now has 300,000 monthly active users in Hong Kong and Malaysia. It has partnered with more than 500 international online retailers including Net-a-Porter, Harrods, and ASOS, with multiple luxury brands and products in its database.
Goxip will use the funding to develop its influencer marketing service via upcoming ‘RewardSnap’ advertisement system, an influencer marketing platform for the fashion industry in Asia.
Some money will also be used for expansion into new markets such as Thailand, and exploring opportunities with mid- to high-end fashion and beauty brands in Southeast Asia.
With Meitu joining as an investor, Goxip expects to leverage the former’s over 400 million monthly active users across 26 countries to accelerate growth in Southeast Asia.
Goxip’s upcoming RewardSnap system aims to connect influencers and brands on its platform, and enable users and influencers to monetize their content. It allows fashion brands to programmatically run influencer marketing campaigns and receive real-time analytics on which influencers work best for their specific products, according to a company statement.
According to TechCrunch, Goxip plans to roll out RewardSnap in the coming months. Influencers will be added on an invite-only basis; Goxip will allow influencers to post content anywhere on the internet, not just the Goxip app.
Regarding the plan to enter influencer marketing service, Goxip CEO and co-founder Juliette Gimenez told the tech news website that she has long admired ‘RewardStyle’, a service that connects influencers and bloggers with brands, but there is a gap that is not served in Asia.
“Brands don’t know how to start the conversation, while influencers in Asia don’t trust existing platforms used like Google Analytics,” Gimenez told TechCrunch, adding that “a lot of the hardcore brands aren’t even online in Southeast Asia.”
This article appeared in the Hong Kong Economic Journal on Jan 31
Translation by Ben Ng with additional reporting
[Chinese version 中文版]
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