In 2014 the founders of a little-known software startup called Fashion Metric arrived in Austin.
The founders, Daina Burnes and Morgan Linton, moved their company from Los Angeles to Austin because Fashion Metric had been admitted to Austin’s Techstars accelerator program.
The goal was to develop an algorithm based on images of body scans that would accurately predict someone’s size measurements after they answered a few simple questions.
Three years later, the company is still in Austin but has rebranded itself as Bold Metrics because the company wants to expand its focus beyond the apparel industry. Burnes said sporting goods or furniture companies could find Bold Metrics’ technology useful.
WHAT THEY DO: Bold Metrics developed its algorithm by obtaining body scan images and data from studies done by universities or the government, and from private companies. (The company says it doesn’t get these images from the Transportation Security Administration.)
After someone answers a few questions about themselves, such as height, weight and age, Bold Metrics says it can accurately predict someone’s body measurements, which will help retailers sell merchandise that is tailored to the customer’s exact body type.
Bold Metrics recently announced a partnership with virtual and augmented reality company Morph 3D to convert those body measurements into holographic avatars. A shopper could use a special headset to then virtually try on clothes using the avatar, Burnes said.
“You could ‘try on’ 50 to 100 garments in 15 minutes,” she said. She said Bold Metrics isn’t marketing the technology to individuals -- it is a product that a retailer would have at a brick-and-mortar store. “Our technology can be plugged into other VR and AR companies quite easily,” Burnes said.
WHO THEY ARE: The co-founders of Bold Metrics are Burnes, the chief executive officer, and Linton, who is the chief revenue officer. The company employs 12 people, and has offices in Austin and Sunnyvale, Calif. There are five full-time employees in Austin.
INVESTMENT: The company has raised $2.64 million in two venture-backed rounds.
BIGGEST CHALLENGE: Keeping up with the company’s growth, Burnes said.
“As we continue to grow, to be able to keep a really good culture within the company and keep our employees happy in a high state of growth” is a challenge,” she said.
Bold Metrics has competitors , such as Body Labs and Fit Analytics. (Though not all use body scan technology.) But she said that Bold Metrics’ technology is “distinctly different” from its competitors. Burnes said some of Bold Metrics’ competitors focus on comparing sizes in different brands.
“We first predict body measurements, and then predict products,” Burnes said.
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