Modsy, a startup that combines 3D visualization technology and personalization capabilities, has raised $23 million in its Series B funding round from Advance Venture Partners (AVP), Comcast Ventures, NBCUniversal and Norwest Venture Partners, the company announced in a press release emailed to Retail Dive.
Modsy has so far secured a total of $33.75 million in venture funding. Previous investors include Norwest, as well as GV (formerly Google Ventures), Birchmere Ventures, BBG and angel investors from the home design space, such as Susan Feldman, who co-founded One Kings Lane, and former Restoration Hardware executive Eoin Harrington.
The startup, which enables shoppers to try out furniture and layout ideas within life-like 3D versions of their real rooms, has been integrated into the design services of retailers such as Crate and Barrel and West Elm.
It has been a hot year for 3D technology.
This funding announcement comes after several retailers have recently launched mobile augmented reality apps that leverage 3D technology and essentially do some of the things Modsy described in its announcement. Also, Amazon recently acquired 3D body-scanning firm Body Labs, and Williams-Sonoma acquired Outward, showing the value of 3D technology that is helping to enable a new generation of mobile shopping apps.
Where Modsy may differ is that it’s independent of any single retailer. Products are sourced from more than 100 retailers, including West Elm, Target, CB2, Crate and Barrel, Wayfair and others. Modsy could create what is essentially a shoppable catalog which its users can use to buy directly from multiple retailers, but via a single shopping cart. As with some of the other retailer apps, users can see how furniture and decor will look in their actual homes before they purchase.
Modsy isn’t exactly coming out of nowhere. The company noted that in addition to already being adopted by a few retailers, it has a partnership in place with NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment that allowed its technology to be featured in Bravo Media’s home makeover TV series "Cyrus vs. Cyrus."
The startup’s list of investors is also pretty intriguing. NBCUniversal isn't a surprise, given the partnership, and neither is Comcast Ventures, given it is also, like NBCUniversal, operated by cable TV giant Comcast. Advance Venture Partners was founded in partnership with Advance Publications, which owns publishing giant Condé Nast, and has investment stakes in Reddit, Charter Communications and Discovery Communications. The interest of these investors suggest Modsy's appeal extends beyond retail.
AVP executive Courtney Robinson described Modsy in a press release as a company that "sits at the intersection of art, media, retail and design." That's a lot for a young company to live up to, but Modsy was founded Shanna Tellerman, a seasoned entrepreneur in the 3D technology space who also happens to have previously been a partner at Modsy investor GV. This startup still has a lot to prove in a crowded space, but is off to a pretty good start.