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Casual footwear brand Solethreads raises $3.7mn in Series A funding

Gurugram-based casual footwear brand Solethreads has announced that it has raised USD 3.7mn in Series A funding from new and existing investors. Fireside Ventures led the round as a new investor and the round also saw participation from existing investors i.e. DSG Consumer Partners & Saama Capital along with angel investors Nihir Nalin Parikh and Dhaval Nalin Parikh.

Founded in 2020, Solethreads is a design-led, innovative driven and sustainable casual footwear brand that provides extremely comfortable and stylish sneakers, flip-flops & slides of premium quality and international standards at sensible prices.

Currently, the brand has a strong omnichannel presence in more than 600 MBOs through distributors and in large retail formats such as Shoppers Stop, Reliance Retail, Metro Shoes, etc. in India’s top 30 cities across the country along with e-commerce sites like Myntra, Ajio, Flipkart, Amazon and its own website.

With the new capital infusion, the company is planning to utilize the funds to enhance its design innovation lab and the R&D centre to strengthen its launch pipeline and explore new categories in the casual footwear space.

Solethreads aims to close the financial year with a presence in more than 1000 Multi Brand Outlets and aspires to be among the Top 3 Casual footwear brands in the semi-premium category on E-commerce marketplaces.

Commenting on the funding, Co-Founder & CEO Sumant Kakaria said, “Solethreads was launched with an objective to offer the best casual footwear designs and innovations to the customers. The footwear industry has been dominated by global brands and Solethreads aims to be the brand built in India for the world. Our First brand outlet in Mumbai is using technology to make it India’s first Phygital Casual footwear store thereby being the disruptor in the industry. The funding will facilitate our expansion into new categories, further enhance our innovation capabilities and fuel our geographical footprint.”

The non-leather footwear industry in India is projected to grow eight-fold by 2030 and is expected to cross the $6B mark by 2024, and Solethreads being a homegrown design-led brand is ready to keep pace.

Vinay Singh, Co-Founder of Fireside Ventures, added, “At Fireside Ventures, we look for brands that understand the consumers they are serving and create products that are solving their unmet needs. Footwear is an enormous albeit highly competitive category and we believe Solethreads is uniquely positioned to capture the untapped opportunity in the casual footwear segment. With a key focus on design, product innovation, and a unique offline-to-online distribution strategy, we are excited to partner with the Solethreads team as they look to build the next footwear behemoth from India.”

“The founding team at Solethreads is confident that the trend for casual, good-looking and comfortable footwear is here to stay. They spent years building an expansive ecosystem of domestic suppliers and manufacturers which allows them to optimize everything from design to production to distribution and shorten lead times from concept to shelf to just 30 days. “We have also taken a new age approach by digitizing the offline business by enabling B2B app for distributors which enables us to have better demand planning. This is a first of its kind initiative in the footwear industry and is designed to totally disrupt this space,” added Gaurav Chopra, Co-Founder of Solethreads.

India is the second largest market after China in the global shoe industry and Indian buyers are conscious of value additions and the brand they choose and hence there is a strong demand for good-looking international quality footwear at sensible prices.

The non-leather footwear industry in India is projected to grow eight-fold by 2030 and is expected to cross the $6B mark by 2024, and Solethreads being a homegrown design-led brand is ready to keep pace.

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