Style is something that defines a person. Lack of it can also be a cause for a lot of heartburn. However, it is not easy for everyone to have access to stylists. But help is at hand. A new player in the field up for a beta launch is Stylopa, and it aims to provide easy access to personal stylists. It is a marketplace connecting both stylists and customers.
Puneet Lahoty, co-founder of Stylopa, is a graduate from University of Michigan, has lived in San Francisco and Singapore and is responsible to drive the product and business. He says they are building a network where a customer in Ahmedabad can be styled by an expert in Paris. Ankita Mantri is the other co-founder and a fashionista responsible for the content on the website. She has lived in countries like UK, USA, Singapore and India which brings versatility to her content.
Puneet says Stylopa is registered in Singapore though they are building the product in Mumbai as they feel it is much cheaper here. According to him, when a person is styled well, he/she feels good and excited about themselves. This is what Stylopa represents, where ‘Opa’ is a Greek word which means excitement.
Their primary audience is the urban youth who aspire to be trendy. Right now they are connected with stylists and designers across the globe, who bring in their own special style be it Indian, western, retro or Indo-western. They cater to all kinds of style needs which a customer may desire. In India, their primary focus is on metro cities like Mumbai, Delhi and Bangalore.
Stylopa will charge a service fee for all subscriptions made by users to have their own personal stylists. They also make revenue from being affiliates to the brands. Puneet says since most of the team members come from the fashion industry background and are focused on style, “we are leveraging the connections we have internationally to build the brand.” Keaton Row (USA) is the closest match in terms of competition. But as of today is no one is offering personal styling advice in such diversity.
Puneet and Ankita say they will invest in expanding their team and setting up offices at strong international markets like NYC, Paris and Milan.
According to Puneet, the Indian society still seems to be very focused on engineering and medicine as career choices. But it is time that people, who would like to pursue creative fields like fashion, are equally encouraged. He says fashion is looked upon as the preserve of only the rich, and they would like to change this perception with Stylopa.