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H&M invests in AI ecommerce site

By Robyn Turk


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London-based menswear ecommerce startup Thread has set out to make styling much easier for male consumers and just received 3 million dollars from H&M to do so. The H&M Group’s investment arm, H&M CO:LAB has funded many innovative fashion startups that focus on technological or sustainable initiatives, such as Aday and Worn Again.

Thread is inventive in that the ecommerce startup uses Artificial Intelligence to provide styling and product recommendations to its customers. The company was founded in London in 2012 and has already gained a consumer base of over 1 million users ranging in age from their late 20s to early 40s, 25 percent of which purchase all of their clothing on Thread.

The retailer’s goal is to prevent shoppers from feeling overwhelmed by too many options and to make shopping an easier process. It uses a combination of human stylist and algorithms to provide personalized recommendations. Shoppers share their style, size, budget and preferred brands, and the more time shoppers spend with the technology, the more the AI learns their interests.

In a press release, Thread announced that it raised 22 million dollars in Series B funding, including H&M’s investment. Balderton Capital, Beringea and Forward Partners also contributed. Thread’s total funding is now over 40 million dollars. The ecommerce retailer shared that the new funding will go towards expanding its AI initiatives and developing brand awareness.

H&M Group