After raising €2.2 million ($2.3 million) to grow its platform, Yaga, an e-commerce company started by women, will soon have too many second-hand clothes for women in Africa and Asia to choose from.
Yaga is a pioneer in the second-hand fashion industry, which is still young in Africa and Asia. It offers a localized and safe way to buy and sell used clothes online. Thanks to companies like Vinted and Depop, the social e-commerce market for “pre-loved” fashion is strong in both Europe and the U.S.
Yaga’s previous funding came from angel investors, but its most recent round of funding came from investors in the Baltics. This round was led by Startup Wise Guys, one of the most active seed-stage investors in the Nordics. It also included Ruby light, Trind Ventures, Specialist VC, and, as well as Markus Villig, CEO of Bolt, and angel investors from Veriff, KlaisPlanet42, Wise, and Katana,
This shows that investors are very sure that the market will grow.
Aune Aunapuu, co-founder and CEO of Yaga, says, “There is a huge future for used fashion, especially in emerging markets like Africa and Asia.”
By 2026, the second-hand market is expected to have grown by 127%. Also, three out of four retail executives say they already sell used items or are willing to do so.
When compared to the rest of the world, the company’s operations in Africa have grown four times faster. In the past 18 months, Yaga’s sales around the world have tripled, and Yaga’s sales in South Africa have gone up by seven times.
When it came out in 2019, Yaga quickly became one of the most popular online fashion platforms in South Africa, with more than 5 million visits per month. Every day, more than 5,000 new items are added to the list. Currently, there are 750,00 items for sale in South Africa alone.
The start-up also has local payment and delivery options, which makes it easier to buy and sell online.
Yaga’s escrow system makes sure that money doesn’t change hands until both parties agree that the deal went well. This takes care of one of the biggest risks of buying from strangers online and gives buyers and sellers peace of mind.
We’re big fans of the idea of a circular economy, and it’s great to see thrifting become popular fashion. The rise of used goods is part of a larger movement toward global sustainability; in fact, even huge retail chains are looking for ways to collaborate to bolster their sustainability plans.
According to Aunapuu, “circular business strategies in the fashion sector lower emissions, cut down on the usage of resources, minimize waste, and build an economy that is more accessible.”
Yaga also gives everyone access to a winning business model. It promotes sustainable fashion while also creating jobs in the second-hand fashion industry. South Africans can save money and make money on the Yaga platform. We are excited about what we might be able to do for South Africa and other places.
With this new investment, Yaga hopes to keep growing quickly over the next year by improving its platform, adding more people to its team, and reaching out to new customers. Now that the company has expanded to Kenya and India, it is likely to become the biggest place to buy and sell used clothes in Africa and Asia.