Tag: Fashion Metric

Fashion Metric Builds a Strong Data Science Team in Austin

Fashion Metric's team in Austin, courtesy photo

Fashion Metric’s team in Austin, courtesy photo

Fashion Metric is working to solve the problem of ill-fitting clothes by employing data science.

The startup created software, which it calls a virtual tailor, to help online shoppers find clothes that fit by calculating their detailed body measurements. It does this by simply asking a few questions online and then processing that information through its proprietary algorithm and database to come up with the correct size and fit.

“What we’ve been focused on building is a really strong data science team in Austin,” said Morgan Linton, co-founder of Fashion Metric.

Fashion Metric moved from Los Angeles to Austin last year to participate in Techstars Austin. But the startup decided to make Austin its home after the program ended. Daina Linton is Fashion Metric’s CEO and co-founder with her husband Morgan Linton.

In January, the company raised $1 million in financing, bringing to $1.4 million its total funds raised to date. And Fashion Metric has moved into 1,500 square feet of office space downtown at the IBC Bank Building and it has hired seven employees and has two job openings.

And recently, Fashion Metric hired two senior heavy hitters in the Austin data science community: Andy Terrel as chief technology officer and Travis Brady, director of data science, to build out its products, Linton said.

Terrel, who previously worked as chief science officer at Continuum Analytics, says he joined Fashion Metric for the opportunity and the team.

“The idea that the fashion industry hasn’t embraced the data revolution is a bit shocking,” Terrel said in a statement. “As we move to an online economy with almost instant delivery, the world is moving on from the brick and mortar stores. Yet, there is a major gap in serving the average shopper’s clothing need. The fashion industry as a whole is losing money because of it. Fashion Metric has the opportunity to completely change the way we buy clothes and create markets not tapped due to the clunkiness of the status quo.”

Brady, who previously worked at People Pattern, Mass Relevance and Zynga, said machine learning is at the core of Fashion Metric’s business and it’s driven by a real need in the massive apparel market.

“Fashion Metric is introducing recent advances in machine learning to problems that have existed in a huge industry for decades,” Brady said in a statement. “This technology genuinely has an opportunity to make a revolutionary change to one of the world’s largest industries.”

Fashion Metric has 20 paying e-commerce customers since launching its virtual tailor product in June. Its customers include Custom Shirts Monthly and Menguin, an online tuxedo rental shop. Menguin has seen its exchanges drop from 50 percent to 10 percent after using Fashion Metric’s technology, Linton said.

Fashion Metric has also expanded internationally with customers in the Netherlands and Singapore.

“The technology that we have can be used anywhere in the world,” Linton said.

Since its launch, Fashion Metric has been focused on men’s fashion. But it is going to be rolling out the virtual tailor product for women later this year, Linton said.

Fashion is at the core of what Fashion Metric does, but it doesn’t have a dress code at its offices, Linton said. Most people wear jeans and t-shirts, he said. But Linton likes to wear button down shirts from the companies Fashion Metric work with, he said.

Six Women Run Tech Startups to Watch in Austin

Laura Bosworth, co-founder of TeVido Biodevices, photo by John Davidson.

Laura Bosworth, co-founder of TeVido Biodevices, photo by John Davidson.

Reporter with Silicon Hills News

The stats don’t bode well for women-run tech startups nationwide. Less than 3 percent of venture-backed startups have a woman as a CEO.

But things are changing. Groups like Women@Austin, Women Who Code and Women in Technology are shining a spotlight on female tech entrepreneurs locally. And crowdfunding, bootstrapping, government grants and angel investors are helping more women entrepreneurs to launch and grow their ventures.

In fact, Nerd Wallet named Austin as one of the top 10 places for female entrepreneurs. And here’s six women run technology startups in Austin to keep an eye on as they expand their ventures:

Spot on Sciences – Dr. Jeanette Hill founded her medical device startup in 2010. It creates a blood collection device called HemaSpot. It lets people take a blood sample safely, securely and easily from a remote location and send it to their doctor for analysis. The company is bootstrapped but has received about $2 million in research grants.

TeVido Biodevices – Laura Bosworth is the co-founder and CEO of this life sciences startup that is making nipples from human cells using 3D printers. The company recently completed a successful crowd-funding campaign and received a Small Business Innovation Research grant from the National Cancer Institute of the National Institute of Health and a grant from the National Science Foundation.

Fashion Metric – Daina Linton is a CEO and co-founder of the startup that acts as a virtual tailor. Her husband, Morgan Linton, is also a co-founder. They founded the company in Los Angeles and moved to Austin last year to participate in Techstars. They decided to permanently relocate and they recently closed on $1 million in financing. The company makes software and has a special algorithm to help people find the right-sized clothes online.

Testlio – Kristel Viidik is one of two co-founders of this startup that is a community of test engineers that test mobile apps to find bugs. The company, originally from Estonia, relocated to Austin to participate in the first Austin Techstars program in 2013. The company has raised $1 million.

Wisegate – CEO Sara Gates founded the company in 2010 and has since raised nearly $9 million. Wisegate has created a platform for IT leaders to interact and share information.

Double Line Partners – Zeynep Young founded the company in 2009 and has since grown it to $20 million in revenue and 120 employees. The startup makes software, data system dashboards and other tools to help schools improve the performance of their students in grades K-12.

Fashion Metric’s Technology Lets Shoppers Buy Clothes Online That Fit

Founder of Silicon Hills News

Morgan and Daina Linton, co-founders of Fashion Metric, photo by Laura Lorek

Morgan and Daina Linton, co-founders of Fashion Metric, photo by Laura Lorek

Fashion Metric seeks to banish ill-fitting clothes.

The startup, founded in Los Angeles, works with apparel retailers to help shoppers understand what size they are so they can order the right size clothes online, said Daina Linton, CEO and co-founder.

Linton, a former PhD candidate at UCLA, came up with idea for the company following a Lean Startup weekend. She continued to work on it at AngelHack. Then she landed angel investment from Mark Cuban. Her husband Morgan Linton, an engineer and sales expert, is also a co-founder.

They’ve been working to solve a common problem people encounter when ordering clothes online – they don’t know what size will fit them. Fashion Metric created data-driven software that solves that problem.

“We’ve built software that acts as a virtual tailor,” Daina Linton said.

Fashion Metric asks shoppers a few questions such as height, weight, size in name-brand shirts and then uses a proprietary algorithm to create custom clothes or to find the right size in off-the-shelf clothes.

Daina Linton comes from a long-line of master tailors, but her experience is in data mining. She did research at MIT and started her PhD at UCLA in informatics. She received a Master’s degree in molecular and medical pharmacology and bachelors degree in engineering from UCLA.

Morgan Linton received a bachelors and masters in computer engineering from Carnegie Mellon University. He got hired as a very early employee at Sonos. But instead of engineering, he went into sales and helped them build their U.S. and international business for 10 years.

Fashion Metric spent the past three months at Techstars in Austin. They are one of the 11 startups pitching Wednesday afternoon at Techstars Demo Day at the Austin Music Hall. Fashion Metric might move permanently to Austin, Morgan Linton said. They’ve extended their lease and they are staying through the fall, he said.

“We’ve really fallen in love with Austin,” Morgan Linton said. “We’re seriously considering moving our company to Austin. For a lot of the reasons everyone is seeing. We see ourselves as a company that is really pulling the fashion industry through the keyhole.”

The last innovation in the apparel industry was a long time ago, he said.

The U.S. Army invented the standard sizes of small, medium and large during the American Revolutionary War so that it could easily outfit soldiers, Morgan Linton said. Those sizes vary widely between brands and it makes purchasing clothes online difficult, he said.

“We see ourselves making the next innovation in the apparel industry,” Morgan Linton said. “We see Austin as being focused on innovation more than any city in the world right now.”

“One thing we’ve noticed in comparison to Los Angeles is the companies that are here are interested in helping out other companies,” he said. “It’s about being part of an ecosystem.”

Fashion Metric, which started focusing on men’s shirts and men’s wear, is expanding into women’s wear.

Today, only 14 percent of people buy clothes online, Morgan Linton said.

“It’s an industry that hasn’t been disrupted by the Internet yet,” he said. “People don’t buy clothes online because people don’t know how something is going to fit.”

Companies like Zappos allow people to buy several different sizes and return what doesn’t fit, he said. But that means a really high return rate. The return rate online is 28 percent, he said.

“The standard sizing system for the ready to wear business has not translated well online,” Daina Linton said.

Fashion Metric’s data driven system understands fit preference as well as size, she said.

Right now, people can take their body measurements three different ways: using a physical body scanner in a store, take a picture with a cell phone or provide measurement statistics, Morgan Linton said.

Fashion Metric also provides data on customers to brands so they can augment their sizing to better fit their customers needs. Fashion Metric’s questionnaire is simple to fill out and provides accurate results, he said.

“We have a massive pipeline of clients that want to use our technology and we’re letting them in as fast as we can with our small team,” Morgan Linton said. “We’re getting incredible introductions from the community to brands that want to use our technology.”

Techstars Austin Unveils its Second Class

logo@2xA Longhorn Startup company, Burpy, is among the latest crop of Techstars Austin companies selected to participate in its three month long accelerator.

Burpy, founded by a group of UT undergraduates and led by Aseem Ali, is an online grocery delivery business available in Austin, San Antonio, Houston and Dallas.

The other team from Austin is Experiment Engine, which runs split tests for companies by a panel of experts. The rest of the teams come from New York City, Brooklyn, Birmingham, Blacksburg, Phoenix, Marina del Rey, San Diego, Belfast and London. The 11 Techstars Austin teams are an electric group ranging from Brewbot, a beer brewing robot to Pivot Freight, a rate comparison engine for freight shipping. Techstars selected them from more than 1,500 applicants.

Smart Host, the team from New York, won the 2014 Startup Bus competition at Rackspace just before SXSW. The company created an app that aggregates and analyzes the short-term rental market from sites like HomeAway and AirBnB so a person renting out their place can price it correctly.

The program kicked off Monday and will run through Sept. 3rd when it will host its demo day, according to Jason Seats, the program’s managing director.

“Heading into the second program in Austin, we’re fortunate to have many of our 2013 Austin alumni on the ground as well as almost 100 incredible mentors,” Seats wrote in a blog post announcing the latest class on the Techstars website.

Each of the companies selected gets $18,000 in seed funding and are offered a $100,000 convertible note. They also get perks such as free website hosting and office space. When the program ends, many of the companies go on to raise money from angel investors and venture capitalists.

The Techstars Summer 2014 Austin class:

Brewbot – A beer brewing robot controlled and monitored by your smartphone.

Burpy – Delivering same-day groceries and home essentials from a variety of local stores.

Cloud66 – Deploy and manage Ruby apps on any cloud.

Common Form – Do your taxes in 5 minutes from your pc or mobile device.

Experiment Engine – A/B testing with a marketplace of conversion experts.

Fashion Metric – Using big data to enhance fit and sizing for apparel retailers and brands.

Free Textbooks – Equips student influencers with software to replace their bookstore.

LawnStarter – The easiest way to order and manage lawn care.

NMRKT – Powering eCommerce for blogs, online magazines, and content creators.

Pivot Freight – Rate comparison engine and discount broker for freight shipping.

Smart Host – Intelligently price your short-term and vacation rental.

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