- Digital fashion company DressX has raised $15 million in a series funding round.
- The company designs virtual and augmented reality wearables for avatars and social media users, and uses technologies such as artificial intelligence.
- The company will continue to offer blockchain-enabled clothing, but may stop calling it NFTs.
Digital fashion company DressX announced Tuesday that it has raised $15 million to further expand its virtual and augmented reality apparel offerings.
Slow Ventures, Warner Music, Artemis Fund and digital fashion collective Red DAO also participated in the Series A funding round, led by European cryptocurrency Greenfield Capital.
Despite being less than three years old, DressX is one of the oldest and most established players in the rapidly evolving metaverse economy of digital wearables. DressX designs virtual fashion items worn by virtual avatars both on-chain, such as NFTs, and off-chain, such as skins for non-blockchain-based gaming ecosystems. The company also creates augmented reality (AR) costumes that real users can wear as filters on social media platforms.
Since its launch in August 2020, DressX has moved to both sides of the Web3 discourse, prioritizing mass adoption over adherence to decentralized principles.
The company angered some members of the tightly-knit digital fashion ecosystem last July when it partnered with tech giant Meta to bring digital apparel to the company’s Horizon World metaverse. Detractors argued that the company was the biggest enemy and obstacle to an open, decentralized metaverse. The DressX founder then told Decrypt that he is trying to bring digital fashion to the widest possible audience.
It’s undeniable that huge enthusiasm for the blockchain-backed metaverse has cooled in the face of technical hurdles and a tough bear market, so maybe DressX’s bet was a smart one. Just yesterday, Meta announced plans to cut support for his NFTs on their platform, removing his Web3 support initiative that was launched less than a year ago. DressX’s Horizon World product, which is not on the blockchain, was not affected by this announcement.
“We are creating content for the here and now,” DressX co-founder Daria Shapovalova told Decrypt. “DressX can be used on social media. Is it part of the metaverse? Isn’t it part of the metaverse?” Shapovalova seemed uninterested in such distinctions. “We started DressX before the word Metaverse was used.”
The same is true for NFTs.
“The community is dropping the word NFT,” DressX co-founder Natalia Modenova told Decrypt. It’s just a method.”
DressX will continue to offer blockchain-enabled digital outfits. Please stop calling those articles NFTs. Many of the company’s best-selling products have nothing to do with cryptocurrencies.
So far, the primary use case for DressX is social media. A user wears her AR digital dress in an Instagram photo or a virtual hat in a front-facing video. Such an app would not require blockchain support, and given yesterday’s meta announcement, it may rule out blockchain.
“We use different technologies in our stack, and blockchain is one of them,” said Modenova. “Various trends are changing the concept of digital fashion, and different technologies are being used to bring that vision to life.”
Another such technology is artificial intelligence. Next month, DressX will launch a beta version of a program that will allow users to quickly cast digital outfits onto a large number of photos and videos with the help of AI, greatly speeding up the fitting process. From AR fashion to real world physical environments.
DressX’s founders say raising $15 million will allow them to start scaling, especially on the tech side.
In a sector deeply entwined with the ever-volatile pulse of the cryptocurrency market, DressX has found a way to insulate itself not only from the implications currently clouding the perception of NFTs and the Metaverse, but also from market forces. maybe.
In December, Warner Music, one of the investors in Tuesday’s funding round, commissioned DressX to begin designing digital costumes for the label’s artists and their fans. That partnership was another one with major his Web2 brand and had no recognizable token features.
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