Describe the company
Lana Gregan, Founder and CEO of Dressup
Like many women, I have a wardrobe full of once worn pieces, but always find I have nothing to wear. I don’t have the money to shop until I drop, or to donate and replenish with a new wardrobe and I couldn’t find a platform that provided a solution to the existing slow selling and cluttered resale markets, one that I would actually want to make that all important effort to list and sell my clothing and didn’t require smart descriptions or hashtags to be found. From that point Dressup was born.
Dressup Market, a mobile platform available on Android and iOS, is a niche technology-focused community and marketplace, for buying and selling new and pre-loved women’s clothing and accessories. Free to download and list, with a commission on sale approach, It’s the new way to manage your wardrobe and organise outfits for any social occasion. Clear out your closet, search event style, add garments to your customised folders where you can see outfits together before you even tap buy. With an innovative sizing algorithm at its core, it helps the user to find clothes that fit, first time.
Through clear and focused design, the platform facilitates quick selling and frequent repeat purchasing, in a cost neutral and environmentally friendly way. We strive to be the Facebook for Fashion, global, easy to use, effective and accessible for all ages. Enjoy fast fashion, and never feel guilty again. Who ever said recycling wasn’t fun?? Shop, Stun, Sell, Repeat.
How are you different?
For online buying and selling, the current space is occupied by retail owned websites, and large catch-all second hand market places. The problem caused by such models include, for business websites, a significant cost to set up and drive consumers and for second hand selling, the length of time to sell in a cluttered markets with poor search functionality. We look to solve this problem by providing a simple and focused design for a niche audience thus creating an effective marketplace that is accessible for all ages.
Our community can search using event categories for inspiration, with the ability to refine easily from style, Closeteer age range, occasion right through to the more standard garment type.
At the core of our platform, due for release this Wednesday 13th of September, is the ability to match to other users using our innovative yet simple sizing algorithm. With new clothing bought from a verified boutique, a return policy is provided however, as sales are final in a preloved market, we wanted to provide a solution that would give buyers in this market greater confidence and guidance in their purchasing decision. Sizing is a concern of 90% of eshoppers, according to our surveys, and we believe that once up and running, our ‘Match My Measurements’ feature will help alleviate this concern and allow users to find clothes that fit, the first time. It will speed up repeat purchases and the time to sell.
With Dressup, the user can not only trade their items but can organise outfits creating customised folders for any mood, season or occasion with our dedicated ‘My Looks’ Feature.
Through a better and focused service, the platform will also cater for creative entrepreneurs such as bespoke designers and small boutiques that want to reach a specific female target market, without a large initial spend or outlay.
In addition, with buyer and seller protection as our top priority, we chose to integrate Stripe as our payments partner, added a clear processing time feature allowing the buyers to calculate their approximate delivery date easily and an integrated shipment tracking facility with all sales using tracked or registered post.
Why will the company/product do well?
Our service has a unique combination of offerings, focused on bringing fashion freedom to women of all ages, sizes and styles. Our innovative design and features will give all the opportunity to buy and sell in an effective market thus as the community grows, the app should become a daily go-to, to get planning the next buy or sell.
Where are you based?
The company is based in Gorey, Co. Wexford. We have a strong tech stack using the cloud based Heroku platform so we can work from anywhere, myself (Lana) mostly works out of the home office, I have an 18 month old daughter so it certainly helps in terms of being most efficient with my time when she is in childcare, and asleep at night when I start my second shift of the day! Amy is based in London which will greatly assist in growing our presence in the UK market.
We are in Dublin taking Street Style snaps..come say Hi if you see us!! 🙌🤗
When was the company launched?
The company is only live a few weeks, launched on 22nd of August 2017.
What have been your biggest wins to date?
As we are new to the market, our wins are more start up based with firstly successfully convincing the Wexford Local Enterprise Office that the business idea was worth investigating and gaining a grant to produce our working prototype and secondly privately funding the completion of the app to launch. Since launching only a few weeks ago, our market is already in action with sales on the rise and today we have 10,000 euro worth of new and preloved dresses alone on sale on the platform.
What type of people (market segment) are you trying to attract to your product?
Available at present in Ireland and the UK, we look to attract women that are active mobile users to use our service. The platform is designed to cater for many different styles and age ranges. We expect to attract a number of different types of segments within that, where we have users who like to buy elsewhere and sell their items on Dressup and continue that cycle, women who like to buy and keep to wear a number of times or women who will both buy and sell on the market. With the preloved market as our community base, as we grow we expect to see more trade accounts looking to reach an audience easily. It is a broad customer segment however we anticipate the 18-36 age bracket to be the initial users and hope to educate family and friends through this group, be it mums, sisters, aunts etc. and grow our community from there.
What tips would you give to others looking to build their business?
Be prepared, ensure you have a strong and understanding support system in place so that you can work the crazy hours needed to achieve your goals. With my husband as business partner and also self-employed he is very aware of what it takes to build a business from scratch and with amazing family and friends to assist with childcare it has allowed me to pursue this dream. Amy also has a strong partner and family network that is ready and waiting to support her needs. With Dressup being my third start up, I believe in reality this is a critical tip to avoid the breakdown of life around you as you build from the ground up.
Seek out a fantastic team. As tempting as it may seem, depending on your product or service it is pretty impossible to go it alone with your start up. Whether its finding a suitable co-founder, a great tech partner or a support system of mentors that can advise you along the way. The saying is very true, two heads are better than one. Building a team as you grow will be important however I would only employ when you really need to and know that you can support their requirements.
You will be pushed to your limits, and outside of your comfort zone. As a founder you will do every role, from fund raising to design to implementation, financial planning and marketing. Learn fast and don’t be afraid to ask questions, if you are not the right person for a task or job, do your best to find someone that can help you.
On sale this weekend..stunning Versace statement shoes!! Stay tuned to our Shop!! 🎉🙌😍😍😍 Shop Stun Sell Repeat #gorgeous #standout #designer #bargain #shoes #style #fashion #dressupmarket #ireland #uk
Tell us about your team?
Our team story;
With a background in business, information systems, retail and finance and two existing separate businesses in the beauty and fitness industry, alongside my husband and business partner Emmet, I had a good understanding of how to approach the start up.
Thanks to the help of my local enterprise officer, Tom Banville and Aidan Shine at the South East Business and Innovation Centre, I was successful in gaining a grant to investigate the business idea further and produce a prototype working with our tech partner Showoff, a multi-award winning Irish mobile development company, based in Rathnew, Co. Wicklow.
At this point, I knew the project was too big to go alone, so I head hunted my good friend and previous colleague, Amy Pugh (Dressup Co- Founder/Chief Growth Officer) and proceeded to do everything in my power to sell her my vision. I knew she had all the skills and experience necessary to help bring the platform to life and grow it to its potential. A Consulting Manager at Deloitte, with a background in business, finance, digital marketing and a seriously impressive set of communication skills, I just had to have her with me. Thankfully Amy accepted my invitation, and the team of one became two.
What are your long term plans for your product/company?
Open to both business and consumer selling, in Ireland and the UK, whether you are an individual wanting to make some space or money, a small boutique looking to reach a female audience, a budding entrepreneur or designer, or simply a buyer out for a bargain, the platform is designed to cater for all, and at scale. As we grow our community and user base we hope to expand to Europe and beyond. We also have some fantastic new features in the pipeline for development and look forward to finalising design and bringing them to the market in the near future.
What are your favourite tech gadgets?
Lana : Busy mum that I am, the Dyson Supersonic hair dryer is fantastic, cutting drying time in half.
Amy : Tom Tom sports watch, showing the stats collected on the app.
What tech gadgets do you wish you could use to help you?
To to be really outrageous with a suggestion, a time machine would be fantastic, for many reasons, who knows the possibilities are endless these days!
Anything else you’d like to add/we should have asked?
We are in the very early days and at our simplest form. We have much more development to complete and are under no illusions as to how difficult the journey will be to reach our goals. The dream is to be a far reaching global platform that helps women everywhere feel good about themselves, regardless of their situation or environment. A platform that supports and champions women, through an active community, content and support team. We believe with hard work, a great team and a whole lot of luck, that Dressup Market has the potential to change the way we shop, in a cost neutral and environmentally friendly way, with no compromise on style.
We would like to reach out to women everywhere, to support Irish, to support other women, and give everyone, regardless of income levels or background that ability to express themselves, a community coming together with one common love, fashion.
Download the app today and join the revolution.
How do people get in touch with you?
We have an email subscription box on our website www.dressupmarket.com if you want to keep up with the latest news, we are on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and if you have any tech issues or feedback to offer you can contact us in app through the help desk or directly at [email protected]