Despite an obsessive pursuit of novelty, the fashion industry has taken little advantage of the opportunities offered by technology.
We all know someone, a friend or family member that is currently building a startup — because it’s in trend, it’s highly in fashion. Now the fashion industry — is actually — my passion. And building ModaResa was the next natural step after my studies in Paris and a short experience in the heart of the B2B fashion industry, as a consultant for leading luxury retailers like Fenwick and the Neiman Marcus group. Moreover, the pool of opportunities in an industry completely blinded by archaic processes that few had dared to touch, definitely appealed to me.
I didn’t study fashion, nor did I ever dream to become a designer, a model or a stylist. But from the fun of expressing myself through clothes and styles at an early age, I soon became interested in investigating what was really structuring this whole fashion industry. I quickly became intrigued by fashion’s central place in society — how this phenomenon — the incessant and cyclical transformation of individual preferences did represent a central question of sociology: that of the relation between the individual and the collective. So, at the point of finishing my studies at Sciences Po in Paris I knew with certainty that I wanted to work within the business of fashion.
Despite an obsessive pursuit of novelty, the fashion industry has taken little advantage of the opportunities offered by technology. It is not many years ago that brands like Chanel and Prada slowly started their shift towards e-commerce. Farfetch pulled the rabbit out of the hat with their perfectly timed platform, putting e-commerce at the doorstep of key industry players in desperate need of technological solutions to face a fast-paced changing consumer audience. This placed them as one of the few unicorns in fashion technology. With B2C digitalization being about 15 years behind, don’t even get me started on the B2B. So I’ll tell you how I set out to disrupt this untapped part of the fashion supply chain — how ModaResa is introducing sexy tech.
A rant is never justified without some self-criticism. When I set out to build ModaResa, I frankly, knew nothing about in depth technology either. Little did I know what I would be capable of building. Knowing what my limits were and deciding I would tackle them full on, I set out to learn programming the summer of 2017 during a 9 weeks fullstack bootcamp. My motivation was fueled by a clear goal to become the prescriptor of changing the fashion week scheduling systems worldwide, thanks to technology.
Fast forward to 2019, ModaResa is currently the first and only scheduling software that is saving the average brand about 117 working days a year, driven by a dynamic small team. We cut ModaResa’s teeth and agily improved our features thanks to a pilot for none other than Balmain and their amazing wholesale team, the pioneer brand that believed in us.
Before continuing, let me share a little anecdote; the month of August is synonym to the only official month off in the whole year in the fashion industry. But — as planning for the big ‘rentrée’ of September fashion month naturally would take place the month before, consequently the wholesale teams of brands around the world could never leave their phone too far away, or too covered in sunscreen. This August though, before our official launch after a longer period of private beta, our second early adopter’s head of sales at Marine Serre, texted me in extase because a certain retailer had changed their appointment multiple times, in the space of just a few days. Now, I’m sure you’re thinking — what the heck is neat about that? Well, she was simply happy because she didn’t have to lift a finger, thanks to us — thanks to ModaResa. She could enjoy her holiday in peace, because that summer — our algos were handling all their coordination for the next Paris Fashion Week sales campaign.
So what is it that ModaResa is really doing? It’s enabling brands to entirely automate the scheduling of their sales campaigns across their internal and external sales team, and enabling their B2B clients to book instantly, all while each and one of their clients’ specific attributes are taken into account. Behind our aesthetic and glossy interfaces, lies lines of complex codes solving a scheduling problem upon constraints, as it would be called in integer linear programming. Mr. Auriault, my mathematics teacher in upper middle school would have been proud of me. That despite my occasional insolence and an increased interest in boys over linear functions, he deeply encouraged me as an assumed teenager. Because he knew I loved solving problems — problems with a double underlined answer.
You’re going to hear more of us, what we do, and what drives us, the people behind ModaResa. We’re slowly but surely building the ecosystem of scheduling, to induce efficiency, but also to enable more informed, sustainable ways of buying and selling during fashion weeks.
I’m recruiting for the ModaResa army, so if you feel passionate about having an impact through your work and you have the mindset to move mountains, join us now.
Open applications are also welcome directly to firstname.lastname@example.org.