Japan’s Start Today, Nissay Capital put $9m in NYC luxury fashion startup Material Wrld

A model presents creations from the Spring/Summer 2015 Michael Kors collection during New York Fashion Week September 10, 2014. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

New York-based luxury fashion startup Material Wrld has raised $9 million in a Series B round from Japanese firms Start Today and Nissay Capital.

Start Today is the parent company of Zozotown, one of the biggest fashion e-commerce sites in Japan, while Nissay Capital is the corporate venture arm of Nippon Life Insurance company.

To date, Material Wrld has secured $13 million in funding, according to a report. This includes a $780,000 seed round led by Great Oaks VC in the US.

The startup’s business model revolves around users trading in their pre-owned designer clothes and items for in-store credit that they can use to buy new designer clothes online and in-stores. According to its page, the company only accepts clothes from the last five years, handbags and wallets from the last 10 years, and shoes from the last five years, from 160 brands. All trade-ins should be in excellent condition.

Just days back, Start Today was reported to have invested a multi-million amount in Malaysia-based fashion e-commerce website FashionValet’s Series B round.

This round also marked Start Today’s first investment in the US, including in the North American region as well.

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Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.