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Go Untucked is a design-driven company that creates t-shirts for the Indian market. The venture believes in design excellence and its products are manufactured according to international quality standards. Co-founded by Amit Sharma and John Lee,Delhiand New York-based Go Untucked feels that t-shirts are not a piece of clothing but a canvas for ideas. The venture challenges designers to create superlative designs on tees for the Indian market. It is more than just a place to buy great t-shirts. Here, you can submit a design or ideas for t-shirts and win more than Rs 25,000 in prize money!Anisha Mehta from catches up Amit Sharma, Founder of Go Untucked, to know more.

Does Go Untucked create limited and exclusive designs?

On Go Untucked, you can comment on products/designs, participate in discussions, and follow (on Twitter) the artists you like. In that sense, we are a social retailing platform that combines both worlds – e-commerce and social media. Moreover, Go Untucked offers only limited edition products. We make only 300 pieces of any given design. So when you buy a t-shirt from us, you know it is unique.

What brought you and John together?

I have two passions in life: entrepreneurship and physics. While doing my engineering from Delhi College of Engineering, I had to pick one, and I chose entrepreneurship. Career wise, I spent three years working at Infosys Technologies, getting two international patents and writing more than 10 international research papers in the area of grid and distributed computing. In 2008, I completed a full-time MBA from University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), after which I spent one year in Silicon Valley. But the most exciting part has been my entrepreneurial ventures. I have started everything from a car pooling system for Bangalore, two (successful) non-profits in Delhi and Bangalore, a venture in the US that didn’t do well, and a strategy consulting practice in India. On the other hand, John, my co-founder, lives in New York, and like me, he went to UCLA for his MBA in general management. But while my past experience was mainly in technology and strategy, he had a lot of experience in design management. So we thought we would make a good team and complement each other.

And thus, Go Untucked was born….

In 2010, we started talking about the t-shirt market, and how design can give any new product in the same category an edge.Historically, so much has been said and done using t-shirts as a medium of communication that we felt it would be interesting to do something in this space.   We also wanted to build in the crowd-sourcing angle, and make this a people’s company. We felt that fashion is an intimidating and elitist concept in today’s society and what people instead need is a way to fulfill their needs around personal style. In other words, people need affordable, well-designed products that can reflect their values and personality.

How much capital did you invest in your venture? 

We raised an initial round through friends/angel investors to support our initial growth.

Are you looking at getting funded now?

Our focus is on making great products and keeping our customers happy. We don’t have an immediate funding need, though we will be open to it somewhere down the road. We believe that if we continue to make compelling products and exceeding customer expectations consistently, the money will come when the time is right.

Who is your target audience? 

We find that our work appeals to people who have an independent though process and have a cosmopolitan outlook. We represent almost the antithesis of the straight-jacketed formal corporate clothing culture (which so many of us hate). So wearing our products is about liberating yourself from constraints; it is about being you. Demographically, we are mainly an urban brand, targeting people who are 18-35 years old. But in the end, it’s always about great design. So if you like wearing t-shirts and like to make a statement in an intelligent, well-designed way, you should check us out.

The e-commerce space is overcrowded with many companies selling t-shirts. Your comments.

The challenges in e-commerce for us are less to do with competition and more to do with the overall ecosystem. Payment gateways in India are a major problem area and a painfully large number of transactions fail due to technical reasons beyond our control. Shipping rates are quite high, and reliability isn’t where we would like it to be. These problems are common to all e-commerce players.  As for similar competition, we are different as we sell unique t-shirts. Within the t-shirt space, we offer much superior designs and garment quality than other e-commerce startups and much greater variety than traditional brick-and-mortar brands.

Tell us about the traction on your website.

We launched on August 15, 2011, and have had a very successful run since then. You can see that in less than three months, we have close to 10,000 fans on Facebook and they are a very active.

How does your supply chain work?

We took inspiration from Spanish retailer Zara’s Fast Fashion model to evolve our own supply chain. We follow an integrated manufacturing model, wherein we tightly control every step of the value chain. This allows us to have an international-quality and yet a nimble supply chain that has a quick turnaround. We are proud to say that 100 per cent of our manufacturing is done using Indian materials, and in child labour-free Indian factories. We do not take t-shirts from the shelf and print on them. We decide which mills our fabric comes from, what characteristics it has and what processing steps it goes through, and then we make our own t-shirts.

Which delivery service and payment gateway do you use?

We use multiple shipping partners. For online payments, we use ccAvenue.

How big is your team? Are you looking at hiring?

We have a small team right now, but are hiring constantly.

What are your expansion plans?

We want to gain more visibility across India and we want to capture a larger share of the market. We are establishing a selected offline presence as well, so consumers can soon experience us in physical stores. We would also like the best designers across India and the world to come and participate in our design platform.

Go to for further details!

If you are an e-commerce enthusiast, then do register now to attend e-Sparks 2011 – India’s premier e-commerce startup showcase, on 17th Dec at IIM Bangalore.

If you are an Indian e-commerce startup, then please do register now to be at e-Sparks 2011


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