Eyeing the wearables space, India’s fashion e-tailer Myntra acquires tech startup Witworks

Photo: Bloomberg

In a bid to expand into the wearables market, fashion e-commerce firm Myntra has announced the acquisition of Bengaluru-based tech startup Witworks for an undisclosed amount.

Myntra has added the Witworks team to its Innovation Labs following the acquisition, which it said will help it strengthen its technology team and augment its product development capabilities.

Founded in 2014, Witworks Consumer Technologies launched its flagship wearable device, the Blink Watch, in 2016, which operates on its voice-based platform, Marvin OS. The platform integrates a number of native and third-party apps capable of voice and visual interactions, designed specifically for wearable devices. The company also offers a range of audio and fitness wearable devices under the same brand.

In 2016, Witworks had raised an undisclosed amount in a seed round led by Fireside Ventures and Investopad. The round also saw participation from P39 Capital, along with a group of angel investors including Anupam Mittal (Shaadi.com founder), Pranay Jivrajka (chief operating officer, Ola), Maninder Gulati (chief of strategy, OYO Rooms) and Abhinav Sinha (chief operating officer, OYO Rooms), among others.

“Wearables is currently a Rs 300-crore industry in India and is growing rapidly, with online contributing 60% to the total business. This acquisition will help us to solidify our position in this segment and enable us to develop and launch cutting edge wearable products like smart shoes, connected smart watches and interactive/intelligent clothing with biosensors,” said Jeyandran Venugopal, Chief Technology Officer, Myntra.

Myntra, owned by Indian e-commerce giant Flipkart, has been trying to diversify its offerings. Earlier this year, it was reported that the company had plans to expand its presence in Silicon Valley, as part of a broader push to invest more on technology this year. It was looking to hire an executive to head a small team of data scientists in the US.

Myntra chief executive Ananth Narayanan was quoted as saying that the company’s biggest investment would be in technology, which it plans to grow much faster than revenue.

As part of its diversification drive, Myntra is also launching a digital TV channel called Myntra TV on YouTube, where it will have a series of digital content pieces on fashion. The move is targeted at getting more customer mindshare.

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