Eyewear retailer Lenskart invests Rs 6.5 crore in face modelling startup Ditto

Lenskart
Image Credit: Ditto

 

To enhance its online engagement with customers, eyewear retailer Lenskart is investing $1 million (Approx Rs 6.5 crore ) Ditto, a US-based startup which develops 3D face model.

Lenskart will take minority equity return of latest funding in Ditto. It has already been offering 3D try-on services on its website and app.

“Lenskart as a company has always believed in constantly innovating and leveraging the technology interface to give customers a best in class experience. Ditto provides us with the patented 3D virtual try-on technology that allows customers to see themselves in eyewear in 180° angles with realism,” Peyush Bansal, Founder of Lenskart was quoted as saying to ET.

The response is encouraging with over 10,000 trials every day and now want to take it to the next level, he added.

Ditto is a VC-backed technology company that is improving how the world’s best retailers sell eyewear.  The 3D Try On service records the users face from multiple angles letting it map the face – and then when the users try on a frame, they can swipe on the image to turn the head to the left and right as well, to get a view of the glasses from different angles.

This online trial provides preferences and historical data to make frame selection faster, more effective and fun for the buyers.

Earlier known as Valyoo Technologies Pvt. Ltd, Lenskart sells eyeglasses, sunglasses, contact lenses and eyewear accessories. While Lenskart has a facility in Delhi to assemble spectacles, the company gets its frames manufactured in China, Korea and Italy, among others. Sale of eyeglasses contributed close to 70% of the total revenue.

In 2015-26, losses of Lenskart widened by 78% to Rs113 crore in 2015-16 from a year ago even as the online eyewear retailer posted a 63% jump in revenues to Rs99 crore. Net loss margins widened to 113% in financial year (FY) 2015-16 from 104% in FY 2014-15, according to RoC filing.

Founded in Nov 2010, Lenskart has raised over $36 million from investors, including Ratan Tata, IFC (venture capital arm of the World Bank) and Kris Gopalakrishnan (Infosys co-founder), among others. It plans to invest over Rs100 crore on business expansion, including opening of 400 stores, in the next two years.

The company, which has a strong online presence, has planned to have 700 stores by March 2019 by targeting small towns, tier II and III cities.

It plans to set up manufacturing and assembly to a new facility in Manesar, on the outskirts of Haryana this month. The company has invested Rs 50 core in the unit. They are aiming 400,000 frames a month and double sales by the financial year end.

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