Fashion find: online retail platform

Whether it’s a statement necklace, sharp tailoring or classic footwear you’re after, new internet start-up has it all sewn up with style and substance 

Online retail continues to boom around the world and Dubai is no exception. Dedicated to the cause, is a new online entrant from the UAE: a fashion portal where savvy shoppers go to source the perfect outfit, pick up key designer pieces or discover a must-have accessory in an affordable price bracket.

Launched earlier this year by Danish duo Nanna Dalsgaard and Rikke Raahauge, is a place where users can buy and sell a range of style items. Operating as an online community based around a shared love of fashion, attracts consumers with a slew of international labels including Jimmy Choo, Louis Vuitton, Marc Jacobs and Mulberry. Nestling alongside them on the virtual shop floor are pieces from lesser-known boutiques in London and New York, one of a kind vintage finds and high street staples.

“Many of us have pre-loved pieces stored away in the back of our closets,” explains Raahauge. “We wanted to create an opportunity for these items to be ‘inherited’ by other fashionistas.” When developing the concept further, xagura’s founders looked closely to Europe and the US where the interest for vintage and unique items is a huge trend. The launch not only comes hot on the heels of other online fashion launches in the UAE, including Fashlink, Reebonz and Namshi but responds to the region’s growing interest in the global trend for vintage style. The site uses designer items as the main draw but because items tend to be pre-owned or samples, the average price is reasonable and accessible.

With backgrounds in marketing, sales and journalism, Dalsgaard and Raahauge have been watching the online marketplace for a while and felt it was the right moment to combine a passion for fashion with an entrepreneurial drive to fill a gap in the market. “xagura’s customer base includes 40 different nationalities,” comment’s Dalsgaard. “Private users can sell the fashion pieces they for some reason never use, it could be pre-loved items like bags, shoes, dresses or abayas, while businesses can use it as an extra sales channel, selling both new items and collection samples.”

Although small, this little start-up has big ambitions: promoting itself through a number of social networking sites, the virtual wardrobe intends to be bursting at the seams with new users by the end of the year. The founders are working on an Arabic version ahead of plans to launch to other GCC countries.