The International Startup Festival brought together over 2000 techies, creatives and investors from all over the world. While walking through the festival site we saw lots of interesting approaches to solving business and social problems. After getting the opportunity to review the participants, these 3 companies stood out, showing where technology could take the apparel, footwear and accessory industry.
Getting the proper fit has always been a concern for online shoppers. With as much as 30% of consumers buying multiple sizes (then making returns), ShoeSize.me aims to make sure the customer is confident they'll get the right size the first time. To find the perfect fit, customers enter the brand name and size of a pair of shoes that they already own and love.
The application then looks through its database of sizing information and finds products in your inventory that have a similar profile so customers get footwear that will fit comfortably. Beyond increasing customer satisfaction, the application has the potential to speed up the time to market for companies bringing their footwear to new markets with different sizing specifications.
Wearable technology is much discussed but often ends up being impractical to any real world use. Heddoko, a Montreal based company, has merged apparel, apps and performance analytics to create a full body motion capture suit that helps athletes train smarter and visualize their progress.
By working out or training while wearing Heddoko's suit injured athletes can monitor and adjust their routines for faster, safer rehabilitation. It also allows coaches to gain insight into how their athletes can improve and collaborate with individuals without the need to be onsite for training. The suit itself is made from a high tech, washable, breathable material that comes with all the required sensors built in. Although the product is not yet on the market, the company has been generating international buzz.
This Montreal based startup takes a cut at custom made dress shirts and suits. Using a mobile truck equipped with a 3d scanner, the company claims to be able to take hundreds of custom points of measure in under 5 seconds. Once scanned, the customer can choose the fabric and style for the suit or shirt that they would like to have tailored. Dress shirts are estimated to start in the $50 range with suits starting at $330 and increasing in cost based on materials and customization. Tailor2Go was a hit at the fest, winning the CBC's pitch competition, and is expected to fully launch later this year.