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Mensa Brands, led by Ananth Narayanan, invests in 10 fashion and beauty brands


Mensa Brands, a technology-driven “House of Brands” designed for the e-commerce industry, has partnered with 10 digitally-focused companies. Founded by the former CEO of Myntra and Medlife, Ananth Narayanan, Mensa has invested in ten fashion, home and beauty brands and the founders and their teams will be part of Mensa.

Mensa’s vision is to partner and invest in digitally driven brands and grow them exponentially. Over the next 3 years, Mensa will acquire over 50 brands in categories such as home, garden, clothing, personal care and beauty.

“We are delighted to announce our partnership with ten remarkable founding teams who have created beloved digital brands,” said Ananth Narayanan, Founder and CEO of Mensa Brands. “We are committed to advancing their journey and working together to create disruptive global brands in India. At Mensa, we are passionate about using technology to create digital brands that are rooted in the joy of our customers. “

Partner brands include Karagiri, a one-stop destination for high-end designer sarees for women and based in Pune.

“We are excited to create a digital first saree brand from India,” said Karagiri founder Pallavi Mohadikar Patwari. “We believe the Mensa team is in the best position to help us in this adventure. The process of the partnership was fair, fast and friendly to the founders. “

Priyaasi, a traditional and contemporary jewelry brand from Delhi boasts of traditional artwork and materials in modern designs, making it relevant for any occasion;

There’s Dennis Lingo, a men’s casual wear brand from Mumbai that is a major player in shirts in Indian markets. Ishin, an ethnic women’s clothing brand from Mumbai, is known for its range of traditional and fusion Indian clothing collections, such as kurtas, kurtis, saris, curtains and accessories.

“In the last two months of working with Mensa, we have already started increasing our sales by working together on growth, supply chain and marketing, leveraging working capital, data, technology and the team’s experience in e-commerce, ”said Charu Agarwal, founder of Ishin.

Hubberholme, an affordable men’s casual wear brand from Delhi, focuses on fashion and sports recreation. Anubhutee, an ethnic women’s clothing brand from Jaipur, is known for its high quality, elegant and traditional designs, handcrafted to meet the sensibilities and aspirations of consumers.

Helea, a smart home device company from Mumbai, focuses on improving lives through innovative and affordable IoT (Internet of Things) products with a mission to make life easier, safer and greener for a better future.

There is also Villain, a men’s personal care company from Ahmedabad, which offers a range of perfumes, clothing and accessories, including sunglasses and sportswear. Ashutosh Valani, co-founder of Villain (who previously founded men’s skincare company, Beardo) said the company will work together to make Villain a well-known lifestyle brand for men across India.

Mensa partners with brands with sales of between $ 1 million and $ 10 million. It targets digitally focused brands operating in different categories including fashion and apparel, home and garden, beauty and personal care, food and others. We’re fast and Founder-friendly, and complete end-to-end acquisitions within 4-6 weeks. Mensa believes e-commerce in India is at the inflection point of non-linear growth and we can build global brands from India.

Mensa has offices in Bengaluru, Mumbai and Gurugram and plans to grow their team exponentially in the coming months, hiring in the areas of growth, products and finance, among others.

After securing a highly successful exit from the PharmEasy-Medlife deal, Ananth Narayanan launched the new Mensa Brands business in May of this year. Mensa had also closed its Series A funding round, raising around $ 50 million in a cycle led by investors such as Accel Partners as well as prominent angel investors such as Kunal Shah, Mukesh Bansal, Rahul Mehta de DST Global and Scott Shleifer of Tiger Global.

Mensa is a Thrasio-type startup and there are many such companies emerging in the country. Thrasio, based in the United States, is a digital consumer goods company that acquires Amazon FBA private label businesses and direct-to-consumer e-commerce brands.

In July of this year, Flipkart Ventures and Tiger Global invested in a Thrasio-style company, GOAT Brand Labs. He would use the funding to accelerate the growth of digital native brands in India. GOAT was founded by Rishi Vasudev and Rameswar Misra, who bring with them decades of expertise in this field. Vasudev, a veteran retail executive, previously ran Flipkart’s fashion business. In the same month, GlobalBees, India’s largest Thrasio-style investment firm, raised $ 150 million in equity and debt in a Series A run by e-commerce firm FirstCry and some of its investors with a additional participation of Lightspeed Venture Partners.

In June of this year, 10club, one of the early players in the e-commerce roll-up space, raised $ 40 million in seed funding. It primarily uses the funding to expand 10club’s brand portfolio, invest in building its tech stack, and for working capital purposes. 10club partners with e-commerce product sellers in India to acquire their businesses.


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Hazel J. Edmonds

The author Hazel J. Edmonds

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