UAE start-up GlamBox has secured its first round of funding worth $1.36 million.
The business, which sends monthly beauty boxes of testing products to its subscribers, attracted the funding from MBC Ventures, STC Ventures and R&R Ventures.
A statement from the start-up firm confirmed the new financing will be used to speed up plans for regional expansion, with GlamBox hoping to deliver its first products to Saudi Arabia before the end of the year.
“We noticed that while the online fashion market was growing considerably in the Middle East, there was a gap in the beauty market,” said Shant Oknayan, co-founder and managing director of GlamBox.
“We were aware of the challenges…but we knew that an e-commerce model that would allow consumers all the interaction with the product, plus a higher level of engagement and connection with the beauty brands would definitely work. And it did.”
“Now we think our renewed focus on engagement and content will resonate with Arab women and our approach has the potential to fundamentally change the way beauty products and content are consumed around the region. We’re fortunate to have a dynamic group of investors that support our vision.”
In an exclusive interview with Gulf Business at the end of last year, Oknayan spoke of the company’s plans to expand into the wider Arab world and that he saw no limits to the vertical markets GlamBox could enter.
“Our vision is to become the beauty hub of the Middle East, whether it’s to learn about a product, try a product or buy a product. It’s where people will gravitate to because they love and they want to learn more about beauty,” he said at the time.
Speaking about their recent investment in the company, Stephanie Holden, managing director for MBC Ventures, said: “With our investment in GlamBox, we take MBC’s commitment to the digital space to new heights, supporting the growth of start-ups that provide fresh and compelling offerings to consumers in the Middle East & North Africa region.
“Based on its development so far, GlamBox has proven that is tuned to the market needs and trends. We’re delighted to contribute to fuelling its next stage of growth, while having a strategic addition to our group’s already strong line-up of investments.”
STC Ventures also gave their vote of confidence with partner Angus Paterson saying: “In GlamBox we found a great team and business, capitalising on the significant opportunity regionally in e-commerce, as well as the growing market for personal care and beauty which is under-served online, and offering a great product for female consumers.