As the world is increasingly driven online, fashion
e-commerce start ups are booming worldwide. With few clicks, we can get
whatever we want. Shopping for clothes was never so easy. However, how many of
us complained about not having the appropriate dress according to our body shape
and size? With individual constructs, many of us do not even know of clothing
which best presents our outward selves.
However let’s complain no more. Veena Ashiya (https://www.facebook.com/veena.ashiya?fref=ts) is here to
answer your fashion queries with her online space, Diskover (http://www.diskover.in/). Being
a self stylist and a discerning shopaholic, I was naturally interested in
capturing the story of this unique fashion e stylist. Like the eventful journey
of a budding start up, this story has its own course. Let me introduce to Veena
before sharing her venture.
Veena was born in the shades of an entrepreneur which gave
an insight to work towards her passion from a very early stage. Her father is a
traditional entrepreneur who created the second largest perfume brand in India
without raising any money. However, she got an opportunity to see the modern
roadway to entrepreneurship through her husband.
She is an alumnus of NIFT, honed and polished her talent by
working with different Indian and International brands. When all her classmates were determined to be a doctor or an engineer,
Veena was in her own whimsical world of fashion. “I think, my call was quite
clear from the beginning”, Veena smiles.
Over the past 8 years, Veena has a close bond with fashion
industry. She always found fashion segment quite interesting. She started an e-commerce site in the U.S
where she used to help NRI’s in buying Indian Jewellery as they could hardly
find them there. However, in India, she noticed western wear was still new to
the Indian body. Her friends were unhappy about the sizes and were finding
pretty difficult shopping online. Later on, she realized, size was never the
reason. It was the gap to understand the type of clothes they wear according to
their body shape.
Even today, e-commerce focuses more on product experience
rather than consumer experience, which is termed secondary. Since, everyone has
a unique sense of taste and hence, the thought of customization clicked her
mind. She tried to incorporate the concept of personal stylist online where
women will be guided by a stylist as per their personal style and shape with
just a click. This idea gave rise to Diskover.
Diskover is an online platform (e-commerce site) where one
can buy dresses according to their shape and size. This particular space is a
combination of fashion and technology. Its user friendly; which is a mix of domain
expert and technology to create great user experience.
Diskover comprises three core teams: Technology, fashion and
Marketing, with Veena being the pivot. She closely works with the technology
team to select the products from various e-commerce websites. She chooses the
latest trends which thus prove a help to the fashion department and finally
never keep a step back to create awareness which helps the marketing team. “In
other words, I help my team to reach their goals which I believe is my primary
job. Every team has certain things to
achieve, wherever they get stuck, I come in,” Veena smiles.
Veena tried to rise
more than 100,000 rupees however she was fortunate enough to get funds from
family, friends and few angels for setting up the site. Currently, they are
trying to raise more. The journey was not smooth as it seems from a distance.
Initially, one has to struggle so did Veena. Team-building
proved a major challenge during the set up. Not only building an algorithm
around such a subjective thing was a major challenge but convincing the
technical people for the same proved a tough one. Secondly, Diskover didn’t
have any predecessors; didn’t have a road map to follow to personalisation.
Veena and her team had to hit the road on the basis of trial and error.
According to Veena, Fashion is a form of expression. Everyone
expresses themselves in one way or the other. People follow new trends that
evolve with the ever growing fashion industry. People always have a desire to
look good and hence it’s hard to think of the evaporation of fashion industry. Diskover
has been operational for last seven months back and Veena is very optimistic of having a personalised fashion destination where people will find better version of