eCommerce

Start-ups: Beawear: Avoid returns and shopping frustration with digital twins

The start-up Opendress has developed an AI solution with which online customers can digitally record their body measurements and shop operators can give individual size recommendations. This should not only reduce returns and thus CO2, but also help avoid frustrating shopping experiences.

Returns are expensive for the environment and for business. In 2018, the Returns Management research group at the University of Bamberg calculated around 238,000 tonnes of CO2 equivalents for all returns in Germany. Overall, online retailers also incur costs estimated at over five billion euros as a result of returns.

Political regulations such as circular economy laws at national and EU level are also increasing the pressure in fashion retail to operate in a climate-neutral manner. To transform the industry, Verena Ziegler and Dr. Frauke Link is making a contribution with her start-up Opendress, which was founded in Constance in 2020.

© Beawear

Beawear founders Verena Ziegler (left) and Dr. Miss Link

They have developed software that not only serves to avoid returns, but also saves costs and improves the shopping experience in e-commerce. The return reason “does not fit” should thus be a thing of the past.

Using a 3D body scan, online customers create an avatar that is used to filter out the appropriate sizes from the partner shops for the customers and to recommend the appropriate items using algorithms.

In order to offer consumers a better shopping experience, gamification elements can also be used, ie end customers can use their “digital twin” to select suitable clothing, filter according to their personal wishes, change them and create their own style profile.

Verena Ziegler explains the business model in an etailment interview.

To be honest and without buzzwords: How would you explain the start-up to your parents?
We address the problem of poor fit, reducing high online returns, costs and waste in the fashion industry. With a solution that is easy to integrate, customers in online shops can record their body measurements using a 3D scan from their smartphone or laptop. From this data, we compare clothing sizes in the first and second-hand area, but we can also create individual mass-made clothing to order.
Our patented AI solution, Beawear, helps e-commerce retailers to match buyers with standard measurements to the correct sizes, but also to serve new buyers with non-standard body measurements. According to a study by the Hohenstein Institute (2021), only around 30% of the population fit into the standard sizes XS-3XL.

With Beawear's AI solution, online retail customers capture their body measurements via a 3D scan and then receive size recommendations based on their individual body shape.

© Beawear

With Beawear’s AI solution, online retail customers capture their body measurements via a 3D scan and then receive size recommendations based on their individual body shape.

How would you describe your business model to a potential partner in a tweet (280 characters)?
Simply integrate into the online shop via plug and play. Users can measure themselves in 3D with any mobile device, no matter where they are. The 3D scan is compared with existing clothing sizes and the appropriate size is displayed. This reduces returns and costs and increases customer satisfaction.

Which companies/customers have you already convinced?

  • ThokkThokk Marketplace, with Lovjoi and ThokkThokk brands
  • The German Armed Forces
  • ZIM network “Clothing in batch size 1” (Urbane made-to-measure clothing – on-site mass customization of textiles in real time), development of mass customization with on-demand production in Germany and Europe in decentralized micro-factories. Efforts are being made here to connect the last local production sites and to strengthen their economic development.

Who would you like to do business with?
Avocadostore because they share our values; Hugo Boss, because they are pioneers of digitization worldwide, starting with the creation of the collection (CAD) to the production of fashion; Balenciaga because they’re just cool, the style hits Gen Z and they had a virtual reality catwalk show; Mark Zuckerberg with Metaverse because we’re better at 3D avatars.

What has been the most important finding since the start?
It doesn’t matter if a product is better for the environment, if there’s no infrastructure for it, the industry won’t change its standard. That’s why you have to create solutions that meet the problems of the industry, in order to then gradually lead them on a journey towards a sustainable, transformative solution. Developing a circular business model that, on the one hand, picks up the current economy and converts it into a sustainable, cycle-based model was a complex development task.

Which success number are you particularly proud of?
In 1 year we managed to build a plug-and-play API solution for easy integration into online shops, built our own marketplace and developed an app version with our software solution.

Which headline would you like to read about your start-up in a business newspaper in five years?
“5 years ago the right idea, the right timing, today they are standard”

Start-ups without buzzwords

Are you the founder of an innovative and exciting company in the retail and FMCG environment? Can you also explain your start-up without buzzwords? Then contact us at any time at [email protected]

You can find all the startups presented so far at etailment-Startups.de.

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