Farfetch Teams Up with Outlier Ventures to Fund Web3 Fashion Startups Through New Accelerator

Both companies are launching the Dream Assembly Base Camp to support up to 10 Web3 fashion startups with funds and coaching.
Image source: Retail Tech Innovation Hub

Quick take:

  • Farfetch is relaunching its Dream Assembly accelerator program after a two-year hiatus.
  • The three-month program will focus on digital fashion.
  • Participating startups will receive $150,000 each.

Luxury fashion online retailer, Farfetch, relaunching its Dream Assembly accelerator program after a two-year hiatus, this time with its partner European VC firm, Outlier Ventures.

Now called the Dream Assembly Base Camp, the three-month remote program will focus on digital fashion, tokenised loyalty, immersive experiences and the creator economy. According to Vogue Business, the program will be fully virtual and will support five to 10 startups that “provide a Web3 solution for luxury fashion or those that aim to expand their Web3 capabilities to the fashion industry.”

The participating startups will each receive a $150,000 grant and an optional $30,000 interest-free repayable loan to help with initial legal costs, along with access to mentors and investors in the fashion, technology and Web3 industries from both companies. The startups will also receive guidance on fundraising, tokenomics, community growth and marketing.

In return, the Dream Assembly Base Camp will have 7.5% equity and 7.5% future token supply, an option to invest at a discount during the next funding round, and repayment of loans out of fundraising proceeds once the fundraising round is closed.

Farfetch launched its Dream Assembly program in 2018, but didn’t want to get involved in Web3 until now. The company’s CEO José Neves told Vogue Business in February that he didn’t want to feed into the metaverse hype and jump into the tech for the sake of it.

“We have seen the definition [of Web3] emerge a lot more in the past six months, and Farfetch is looking to support the future of that,” says Carol Hilsum, senior director of product innovation at Farfetch, told Vogue Business. “The luxury sector has been testing and seeing validation from the customer, and the consumer has been a real guiding light.”

With that said, Farfetch Dream Assembly and Farfetch Platform Solutions have already funded Web3 technologies in the past, such as New York tech startup, Eon, which participated in the Dream Assembly program in 2019. The startup has provided blockchain-based digital identities for fashion companies like Mulberry, Gabriela Hearst and Yoox Net-a-Porter.

With the new accelerator program, Farfetch is looking at startups that are building digital fashion for avatars and what luxury fashion would look like in a Web3 setting. The company has previously digitally dressed influencers to promote its pre-sale offering as well as a digital try-on via Snapchat.

Similarly, Outlier Ventures has been running Base Camp, a Web3 accelerator program, since 2019. The program has invested in digital fashion houses, Auroboros and Gravity Layer.

Applications for Dream Assembly Base Camp will be accepted until Aug 19, and the program will commence in late September.

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