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From Investment Analyst To Global Social Network Pioneer

Eshita Kabra-Davies

By Rotation

Powered By:

hsbcinnovationbanking logo

From Investment Analyst To Global Social Network Pioneer

Eshita Kabra-Davies


By Rotation

Watch this episode on SpotifyWatch onListen on YouTube
Eshita Kabra-Davies By Rotation
Full transcript here

About Eshita Kabra-Davies

Episode 132: Amardeep Parmar from The BAE HQ  welcomes Eshita Kabra-Davies, Founder and CEO of By Rotation.

Eshita discusses her journey from a finance career to launching a successful fashion rental platform aimed at reducing textile waste and promoting the sharing economy. She details her entrepreneurial beginnings, the motivation behind By Rotation, and its growth to become the world's largest shared wardrobe.

Eshita Kabra-Davies

By Rotation

Show Notes

00:00 - Intro

01:47: Early entrepreneurial activities with website design.

03:05: Benefits of her experience in investment management.

04:26: Motivations for studying and working abroad.

06:07: Transitioning from finance to the fashion industry.

07:08: By Rotation's growth and adaptations during COVID.

08:17: Operational model and community aspect of By Rotation.

09:34: Inspiration for By Rotation sparked by a personal experience during a honeymoon.

10:43: Impact of By Rotation and its mission.

12:09: Leveraging a finance background in the fashion industry.

13:50: Early marketing and community feedback for By Rotation.

14:19: Expansion and recognition in the UK market.

16:43: Support from HSBC Innovation Banking.

17:14: Utilising tech skills for startup growth.

18:02: Managing a startup during the pandemic.

19:30: Networking tips for industry newcomers.

20:00: Future goals and global aspirations for By Rotation.

Headline partner message

From the first time founders to the funds that back them, innovation needs different. HSBC Innovation Banking is proud to accelerate growth for tech and life science businesses, creating meaningful connections and opening up a world of opportunity for entrepreneurs and investors alike. Discover more at https://www.hsbcinnovationbanking.com/

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Eshita Kabra-Davies Full Transcript

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 0:00

I actually founded By Rotation as a side hustle, which has actually gained us the name as the Instagram of Fashion Rental. It wasn't until the honeymoon that I noticed a lot of textile waste in my suburban hometown to see how polluted it was and the fact that I, too, had bought new clothes for this trip, and 90% of what we donate to charity shops ends up in Asian and African landfills. So By Rotation is a social network where you can lend and rent designer and premium items with each other. We've actually built the world's largest shared wardrobe, so we have over 120,000 peer-to-peer listings worth over 60 million pounds on the app.

Amardeep Parmar: 0:43

Today on the podcast we have Eshita Kabra, who's the CEO and founder of By Rotation. They're the world's largest shared wardrobe where you can rent, lend and resell your items. We learn Eshita's story growing up in Singapore, moving to London, having a successful career in finance before realising there was a problem which she wanted to be solved in the circular economy. We learn how she built her app on the side whilst working full-time and what tipped her to go full-time, and how she's been able to grow substantially since then. Her passion really shines through in this episode and I hope you enjoy. I'm Amar from the BAE HQ and this podcast is powered by HSBC Innovation Banking. By Rotation is doing incredibly well now and it's such an incredible story. But when you're a little kid, what would you want to be? Did you think one day I wanna be entrepreneur?

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 1:47

Well, we were beginning to have laptops and there was this website called neopets. com. I don't know if you know that, but it's like a virtual pet. You know, and you know as asian parents, you're not allowed to have pets and I was like I always wanted a pet. So I really got into neopets and I learned how to graphic design myself and then eventually also web design and code, and I was selling my layouts on the World Wide Web to random people who became my pen pals and friends. This is all before social media like Facebook and MySpace was a thing and I was being paid in US dollars for my layouts, as they called it, on PayPal.

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 2:24

And that was the really early days of PayPal too. And my parents were, like, what are you doing until 2am on the laptop? This is shady. Like we need to check the search history. We don't know what she's browsing. And they were just surprised to see that I had founded my own business selling websites online to strangers. And I think that's when they kind of knew that there's this entrepreneurial flair in me and I started thinking about how I at some point would like to found my own business, but I just don't know what it's going to be in.

Amardeep Parmar: 2:53

And obviously you didn't initially go down the path of full time entrepreneurship. Right, and what made you go down the path you did, in terms of going to university and studying in the financial area as well.

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 3:05

So I went abroad for university. So I grew up in Singapore. I'm Indian, obviously born in India, in Rajasthan in particular, and when I went to study abroad in the US and UK, it became very apparent to me that, in order to be able to stay in the country after graduating, I would need to be sponsored by a large company as an international student, because I have an Indian passport, which, by the way, is such a nightmare when it comes to immigration. But I'm very proud to have that passport. And that's when I kind of realized that I'd need to do something a bit more corporate.

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 3:40

And, you know, I actually really enjoyed my six and a half years working in investment management. I feel like it. You know, it gave me, it equipped me with a lot of these hard skills, analytical skills. It made me very professional. You know the kind of work ethic that you pick up working at one of these sort of you know, I guess very corporate environments. It's it's pretty different to the various industries that I'm now working in fashion media. Sometimes these industries can be quite fluffy and sometimes they're really all about who you know rather than what you know, and I feel like my career in investments really made me much more, I guess, about substance over style and really very merit oriented.

Amardeep Parmar: 4:26

So that decision you made earlier on to move to the UK or the US at that point that's just quite a big decision, right For somebody who's growing up in Singapore, now wants to move abroad and like one of the things of those podcasts is, so many people who've been on here weren't born in this country and they've moved here and obviously there's a risk that's involved in that. Did that ever scare you at all about building your life here away from your family?

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 4:48

I don't know. I kind of. I mean, I was the middle child, I am the middle child and middle child.

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 4:52

Oh, really okay, we're quite rebellious, right, and we want attention, and often when we want attention it's because we haven't gotten enough at home. So I was very excited to leave home. And I don't know if you guys are aware, but Singapore is also it's a city state, right it's. I mean, if you go out to a bar or a club, chances are your parents' friends are going to find out and they're going to ask your parents about it, right. So I was like I'm ready to leave home, right, and explore, you know, the other side of the world.

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 5:21

So I was very excited to go abroad and actually I spent a year in the US at a really great university, and then I realized that it wasn't really for me because it was a how do you call it? It was a college town, which was a big shock for someone who is a complete city girl, and so I actually moved to London instead and then went to Caspus' school, which was in the center of London, and I enjoyed my time at the university so much that I actually did a placement year. So I worked for a year during my degree and that's when I kind of realised that I actually really enjoy working in a corporate environment, and I particularly like working in London and the UK and I was like I'm ready to, you know, stay here forever. And now I've been in the UK 13 and a half years.

Amardeep Parmar: 6:07

And you mentioned there about the investment career you had as well, and do you think sometimes people were surprised by that, considering, like you said, in the fashion industry there's people who have to have very creative careers before that for you to kind of shift from that corporate space into what you're doing?

Amardeep Parmar: 6:07

And you mentioned there about the investment career you had as well, and do you think sometimes people were surprised by that, considering, like you said, in the fashion industry there's people who have to have very creative careers before that for you to kind of shift from that corporate space into what you're doing?

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 6:30

Yeah, and I think that actually makes me stand out. You know. So I've spent time on the trading floor as well. I've been an investor in public markets, so specifically bank bonds, which you know they've become very sexy now, but it's sort of like a very very it's very regulatory heavy. There's a lot of prospectuses that you're reading when you're investing in corporate bonds and that's so different to what I'm doing now. But I think that almost makes me stand out more with this very homogenous fashion industry that we see in the UK, within Europe. Well, to be honest, most of Western fashion is very homogenous and this has helped me stand out and I actually, you know, I talk about it more because I think it reminds people that we're disrupting the fashion industry with what we're doing at By Rotation. We don't want to be a part of it.

Amardeep Parmar: 7:08

Yeah, and I think that's so important, like you said, because sometimes people can gloss over those kind of details. But it's one of the competitive advantages, right? Is that you have that solid background in the financials, which means that when you're competing against other people, you've got something they don't have. But how did you make that transition? What's the story of going from investment world to By Rotation, like what was the switch?

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 7:29

I actually founded By Rotation as a side hustle, so the company's incorporated in April 2019, but I only went full time with it in October 2019. So I guess, like most Asians, were quite conservative or cautious, but we have so much more at risk here. You know, I mean, I was here on a visa as well. I now have an indefinite leave to remain, and so I had to be very sure that this risk that I was taking with my career would actually pay off and made sense, because I would probably also have to leave the country if it didn't. So I was very careful to make sure we hit certain quantitative and qualitative targets before it really felt like the right thing to do, because not only was I leaving my job, I was leaving the entire industry and career and if it didn't work out, it would be very hard to reenter.

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 8:17

And, funny enough, I actually went full time with By Rotation five months before COVID, where obviously there's no need to rent clothes and fashion right, because we were all in our PJs. But actually we used all that time to educate the audience and masses about why it's good to share items and more about the sharing economy and peer to peer in particular, and that helped us acquire new users. So a lot of user acquisition happened then and in a very cost effective digital manner. And then we also got a lot of supply on the app, so we had a lot of people listing their items, so that when we were out of COVID we actually had a huge demand and a spike that we didn't even anticipate at all on the platform.

Amardeep Parmar: 8:57

So, for the people who aren't aware as well, what was the initial idea for By Rotation?

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 9:00

So By Rotation is a social network where you can lend and rent designer and premium items with each other, so you can save money. You can rent items for a fraction of retail value, often 10%, for like a weekend. You can make money. Some of our top lenders make over £4,000 a month from their side hustle of renting out their wardrobe. Because fashion is our first vertical. Some of them have funded their IVF journeys, they're paying for childcare, they're saving up for their mortgages or their next cocktail or holidays.

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 9:31

It's like a myriad of reasons that people are using the app.

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 9:34

You can also make new friends. So, because it's a social network, you follow each other on the app and what happens is people tend to repeat rent from the same person over and over again, which has actually gained us the name as the Instagram of Fashion Rental. And finally, but very importantly, because we are very mission oriented and we truly believe that there can be profit and purpose together. We believe that, instead of buying new products, you can share and therefore actually help fight over consumption. So really, our mission is to transform consumption for good and we like to say what's mine is yours in the By Rotation community. So we've been going for about four and a half years now and with our first vertical, which is fashion, we've actually built the world's largest shared wardrobe. So we have over 120,000 peer-to-peer listings worth over 60 million pounds on the app, which is insane, because you've got other incumbents that are inventory-based, fashion rental and subscription models who've been around 13 to 15 years and are listed companies that have about half the stock that we have, because we don't hold any stock.

Amardeep Parmar: 10:43

It's just sitting in people's wardrobes so, like your passion is really shining through here. But where did that come from? Like, why was this a problem you cared so much about?

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 10:51

to go and do something about it well, it was a problem that I wanted to solve for myself, so a very first world problem. But, um, I was planning my honeymoon, which we know is a trip of a lifetime, and I was going back to Rajasthan, where I was born, and I wanted to show my husband where I'm from my roots and reconnect with them, and so I started thinking about all my outfits that I wanted to wear while planning the itinerary, because I'm a control freak.

Amardeep Parmar: 11:15

I'm just kidding.

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 11:16

And that's when I started, you know, kind of realizing there was a gap in the market for renting fashion here in the UK, in Europe. And then I started, you know, kind of looking at the global fashion rental and sharing landscape and it became very evident to me that all the players out there be that in the US or in China and India and Singapore where I grew up they all had very inventory heavy, you know, existing models which were essentially dry cleaning businesses and logistics businesses, and I was like why can't this book be more like? You know people on social media who never repeat their outfits, like why don't they just share stuff with each other and get paid for it and we take a commission? So kind of like Airbnb, uber, you know all these sharing economy businesses that have become so global, so scalable. And that's when this idea sort of started brewing in my mind.

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 12:09

It wasn't until the honeymoon, so a few months later, that I noticed a lot of textile waste in my suburban hometown. So two hours away from Edepur there's a place called Pilvara where I'm from, not somewhere you'd go to as a tourist, but you know a lot of my relatives still live there and I hadn't been back for 14 years and I was just surprised to see how polluted it was and the fact that I too had bought new clothes for this trip which I probably didn't love as much. I probably wouldn't wear them at least 30 times. That's apparently the optimum number. I'd say it's the minimum number of times you should wear a clothing item, and 90% of what we donate to charity shops ends up in Asian and African landfills.

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 12:52

So I just couldn't help but feel I was part of the problem. I was this consumer with a very consumerist mentality living in the Western hemisphere sending stuff back to my own country. It just felt very racist and it doesn't help that the fashion industry is also. If you look at its representation, it can seem a bit exclusive also. So that's when I thought why don't I come up with this idea, you know, enact it and try it out with my friends and see if I can build like a marketplace and eventually a social network to connect people. But you know, I've grown up in Singapore, which you know, the national hobbies there are shopping and eating, and I was very good at the former, so it just kind of feels.

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 13:33

I was very good at the former, so it just kind of feels okay, there we go, there we go, we're good Singaporeans here, um, and that's why I kind of felt like it seemed very much like something I would use myself. And what's really interesting is I continue to use my app every single day, but I'm no longer a top lender or renter which is great.

Amardeep Parmar: 13:50

Yeah, you had this amazing idea right and you've got the investment background. What was the first step you took to try and make it a reality? Like you've got the blank canvas. What was the steps you took?

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 14:00

I decided which is unlike a lot of people in the fashion consumer media space I decided to actually do a soft launch very quickly in a very scrappy manner. So the first thing I did is I already started planning in the last leg of the honeymoon to do an event you know, facebook events God do we still have them?

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 14:19

Yeah, throwback right. I made one and I invited all my friends with the context of meeting my dog, because I was going to get a puppy. When I came back from the honeymoon I said come and meet my dog, you'll get to meet him and I want to run a business idea by you. So I put them together and so it was my one bedroom in Marlborough and I invited them all over on a rainy Saturday when I got back from the honeymoon and they got to meet my puppy, saffron. And then I told them about the idea and I had rails of clothing and I asked them to bring their clothes too.

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 14:52

And I said what do you think of this? And you know my friends to date, the ones you know, my true friends outside, what I do. They're all bankers, lawyers, you know, consultants, all of that stuff. And they were like this is a bit strange. It's weird, we get it and it could work, but we're not your early adopters Like we need to see it stick a bit, not your early adopters like we need to see it stick a bit. And that kind of makes sense, because I myself are, you know, I'm not really the person who's the first one to download a new app and try out a new marketplace. Like, I kind of see it around and I get influenced by influencers and writers and people like that. So I was like, okay, well, it sounds like they would use it, but they wouldn't be the first ones to use it, and that's's when I realized let me very quickly experiment by creating like a like a shabby, you know quick marketplace. And so there's this website called ShareTribe where, for 199 US dollars I don't know if they've increased their price, they should you can kind of see there's a product market fit for a marketplace idea. So I use that and very quickly configured it in some brand colors that I thought would be very appropriate to By Rotation.

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 15:56

And, yeah, and we pushed it out there. We made an Instagram account, you know. We tried to engage with people that we thought would be relevant for us within the UK in particular, and we started seeing traction and we got picked up by fashion and broadsheet press. We got picked up by fashion and broadsheet press. Uh, next thing, you know, you've got, um, you know, like a mention of us on in guardian on the weekend and it started becoming very real. We started seeing transactions happen on the scrappy. Uh, you know share tribe, um. You know white label solution platform that we made from um rotators, as we call them, between Nottingham and London. And that's when I realised this isn't something I'm doing with my friends. It's actually random people in the UK that I don't even know.

Amardeep Parmar: 16:43

We hope you're enjoying the episode so far. We just want to give a quick shout out to our headline partners  HSBC Innovation Banking. One of the biggest challenges for so many startups is finding the right bank to support them, because you might start off and try to use a traditional bank, but they don't understand what you're doing. You're just talking to an AI assistant or you're talking to somebody who doesn't really understand what it is you've been trying to do. HSBC have got the team they've built out over years to make sure they understand what you're doing. They've got the deep sector expertise and they can help connect you with the right people to make your dreams come true. So if you want to learn more, check out hsbcinnovationbanking.com.

Amardeep Parmar: 17:14

So if you want to learn more, check out hsbcinnovationbanking.com. And I think what's cool about as well. You mentioned about when you're a kid that you did the website stuff, and it's how it's now joining the dots backwards, right, how it helps you, and I think a lot of people forget about that. Those kind of skills can be really useful when you start a business and even for like our own stuff. I used to be a tech consultant for seven years.

Amardeep Parmar: 17:35

The entire website was built by me all the CRM and things and it's a massive shortcut yeah rather than having to hire somebody to work it out you just did it yourself and you could get that first level going. And you also mentioned how it wasn't too long before COVID started when you went full-time. How was that experience? Because you're like first-time entrepreneur, like full-time how was that experience Because you're like first-time entrepreneur, like full-time, and this massive world changing thing is happening. How did you deal with that?

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 18:02

How did you weather that? Yeah, it was really annoying because I was like, oh man, I could have had a tab open and, you know, still have a stable salary, you know, and actually have the best of both worlds, and it was pretty unfortunate, I thought. But actually we were pushing By Rotation so actively on social media that I'm pretty sure I couldn't keep both jobs. You know, I had to let compliance already know that I had become a director of a company and that I wasn't competing with what I was doing at the last place that I was at, which was a hedge fund. But I definitely could not have pushed By Rotation as much when it came to educating people during COVID. You know, running Instagram live series to build my own network within the fashion industry through COVID. I mean, think about it.

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 18:41

I knew no one within the fashion and the media industries because I'm an immigrant. I worked mostly in finance my entire life. All my friends are very corporate. They don't really know fashion or media people either, and I didn't go to the same schools as most of the people who work in these industries do, so I had no way of, I guess, making it and getting in and, in a weird way, covid was an equalizer for this industry where, you know, if I wanted to network with this person, I didn't need to be invited to a particular event to find them and to meet them. I had access to them directly just by messaging or emailing them and that really helped, because I really built my network during COVID and obviously COVID is a terrible thing, but it helped me kind of really push our brand out there very digitally, which is what we are anyway.

Amardeep Parmar: 19:30

You know, we're completely peer-to-peer and we're a tech business more than than anything else so from my experience of like, obviously following on instagram, seeing what you've been posting things, I'd always assumed you would know people from like your entire life, because you seem like so incredibly connected now and to be able to build that in such a short amount of time is something I think a lot of people can learn from as well in the scrapping issue and the way you did that. And do you have any advice for anybody who is entering an industry where they're not an insider? They don't know anybody. How can they try and make those connections in the way that you did?

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 20:00

yeah, thank you, and and, to be honest, it was. It is still very painstaking and I'm very big on grassroots activation. I still tell my team and I still do it myself. So, you know, in the very early days, while I was running By Rotation as a side hustle, you know, in the evenings and weekends I would go to a lot of networking events within sustainable fashion or the fashion industry, whichever seemed open to someone who was a no one Right, and I would go there and I would sit front row. And you know, once the panel is over, they'd be like do you have any questions? And I would always raise my hand up and I would say my name is Eshita Kapra. I'm the founder and CEO of By Rotation. Not that anyone knows what By Rotation was, right, we were an account, Instagram account, with 200 followers, all my friends and I would beg them to like every post, and I started sort of networking with people that way, just by being outspoken, by showing initiative, by showing up. It's these three things that kind of made, I guess, made me like more and more a voice and someone that is to be noted within the industry.

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 21:04

And then you know, each time I was invited to speak on panels, be them, be it like small, random panels, Like I remember once going all the way to speak at a university course which had only actually it was just before COVID. It was a day that they were going to announce that there was a lockdown and I was like I think something weird is happening. I'm not sure I should be going, but I went anyway to speak at a university course and there were only four people there, you know, and I thought what am I doing? Right? But I was like you know what everything's going to amount to something and actually I have been invited back to the university and had a full house when we did a zoom interview later during COVID. So you know, it's one of those things where it kind of like every small thing you do does actually result in the bigger picture. So now it may seem like I have a very good network and I'm well connected, but it's really come from me showing up.

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 21:58

It does also help that I live quite centrally and that's a strategic decision that we've made. You know, it seems a bit crazy to live right in the center of London, but it helps me get around to four different events within a day and what I do a lot and I almost see my job now, four and a half years later, of By Rotation having a very you know, it has a very great flywheel where our renters are becoming our lenders and our lenders are becoming our renters. So that's also why it's called By Rotation and you know, the business is kind of like doing so well on its own that I actually spend a lot of my time being more like a missionary. You know, I speak at panels and conferences, I record podcast episodes, because my job is to tell you about how great By Rotation is and what we've achieved and what else we're doing and what our mission is. So I think it's really about being present and also being grassroots. You know, I still talk to my top lenders and my top renters and I love to meet people.

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 22:58

Next week I'm speaking at a university and then another university the week after.

Amardeep Parmar: 23:04

Earlier in the podcast, you mentioned some of the amazing numbers you've been able to do with the business and that journey just seems incredibly fast how you've been able to do that. What were some of the biggest obstacles you overcame in that way? What are some of the mistakes you made that you learned from to make the business stronger and to make yourself stronger too?

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 23:19

I suppose it isn't really a mistake, because now we've realized it's fine that we did it, but I suppose we could have avoided doing it. So we launched both our Android and our iOS app at the same time both our Android and our iOS app at the same time, and our engineering team is only four people full-time in-house, which is very small, by the way, for the fact that we're building a marketplace and a social network that's both in the UK and US now, and we were given advice that we should only focus on the iOS. But anyway, we went ahead and did the Android app, which I think sometimes we'll see the development lagging behind the iOS, and you'll have some users who are more frustrated and they're like how come this? You know, we've told you that we have this phone. You said you have an app for our phone and it's not working properly. So you know, that's something I guess in hindsight maybe we shouldn't have been so ambitious about. In hindsight maybe we shouldn't have been so ambitious about, but now it's absolutely necessary because we do get quite a few of our top lenders who are using the Android app.

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 24:20

The other thing that we didn't do, which we had a lot of journalists, especially fashion editors, who are a bit more old school, telling us oh great, it's an app, that's great, but I want to use the website, I'm not downloading an app. And we were like, no, this is not a website. We want you to download the app because it's a community, it's a social network. So, you know, we kind of stood by, you know our platform and like our strategy, and I think that really paid off. But I think, you know, looking back at it now, I would have actually invested more in SEO a bit earlier, even if the website wasn't fully transactional. We should have actually built out the catalog online earlier. But now we've done that and we're actually really top performing on SEO because our name is also interesting Even my name is. My dad misspelt my name, so I always show up on Google search first, which is great, but yeah, I think that's something I would have changed.

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 25:14

And then what's? I would say consistently, a challenge is fundraising, and I think it's you know it, I think everyone knows this. It's not even something that we need to discuss at length, but I think it's really, really difficult when you know, when you look at, when you think about institutional funding, especially in the earlier stages of a startup. It tends to be venture Venture. Funding tends to be mostly, you know, white males who kind of make you know they're the investment partners who make the decisions at the end of the day. You might have an associate who's you know, a person of color or a woman or whatever, but oftentimes the deal is then brought in to the IC, which tends to be all white males.

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 25:53

So it's kind of difficult if the words like fashion are used, even though we're really a social network and a marketplace, and that's been kind of challenging to convince some people. That being said, you know some people who are very happy to put their prejudice aside and look really at our great numbers. They're the ones who ended up in our count table. So we are venture backed. My lead investor, you know, like you know, he is a white male. He sits on my board and he's been very, very supportive. And what I like about you know, what I like about a few of the investors out there, is that they just care about the numbers and the service. If it makes sense. They're like it doesn't matter that you're a female, that you're an immigrant, you're a solo founder and all of that.

Amardeep Parmar: 26:36

We just really believe in the vision and how you're executing so I've obviously seen your deck right and we see hundreds of decks, but yours is actually really good and I can say that, like on camera of where we see so many that just a bit muddled like, you're very clear, the numbers are clear with the message about how you make the money, everything in there. So it's a really good deck in terms of how it's been laid out and you can clear the storytelling and the narrative through it. So, while it can be sometimes you said like people believing in what you're doing in the mission, it's also you've put that incredibly well in the storytelling to convince them to do it. Thank you, so it's also a skill that you and your company have done too.

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 27:11

Thank you.

Amardeep Parmar: 27:12

So we're going to need to use some quick questions in a moment. But you mentioned before about this being your first vertical with fashion. So what is the dream for By Rotation, say, 10 years time? What can people expect?

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 27:24

Yeah, we want to be local, so we want to be global. In every country that you would be visiting, we want you to be able to rotate from your local communities. So, about two months ago, we launched a new feature, which is rent by location. So it's even better than a dating app, because you can see what's around your radius and you can rent something even last minute. So that's why we call it global, right, global and local communities. And really we're getting very hyperlocal with it. You know, we're having people rent from their neighbors and, you know, from people down their street whom they've always admired in terms of their fashion. And, yeah, our I guess our long term mission is really to transform consumption for good. So we see ourselves as part of the sharing economy less e commerce, less fashion. You know the name is also by rotation. It's not very, it's not kind of paying a nod to the fashion industry in particular either, and that's been a very um.

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 28:20

You know it's been something that I've thought about since I launched the company it's not a new thing, and we've already seen other verticals come up very organically on the app. So we've seen high-end luggage being listed, so Rimowa, samsonite, antler suitcases. We've seen things like baby carriers, like the Artipope I think that's how you pronounce that brand. You know it's 400 pounds for a baby carrier. It's very wasteful to buy it because I guess your baby will grow very quickly and it comes in different colors and prints and men and women like to carry it to match their outfits on holidays and weddings and things like that.

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 29:01

So we're kind of seeing new verticals come very organically on the app without any marketing or push. I think what we have in common with these different verticals is that they all tend to be working professionals who have high disposable incomes and care more about access than ownership. So the user persona is the same. It's not going to be like a messy experience where you know there's like a power drill and like a pair of manolo blahniks on the hill on the on the app. So we have to get to quick fire questions now. It's been great to hear your story and I think you so we have to get to quick fire questions now.

Amardeep Parmar: 29:32

It's been great to hear your story and I think you've been up to so. First quick fire question who are three british asians that you'd love to shout out that you think are doing incredible work?

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 29:40

it's definitely got to be Akash Metha. He is the co-founder and CEO of Fable and Mane , which is the hair care company, um, I love how much he puts himself out there. Uh, also very successful, by the way, and I know, age is just a number, but I'm very inspired by him and I love that he wants to create his own big empire of you know, South Asian Beauty and sort of wellness, because I think we need that. I haven't seen that a lot and I see a lot of Western brands taking it from us.

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 30:10

And then I want to give a shout out to Dinika Mahtani, who is a partner at Cherry VC. She's also one of my angel investors and actually the story is that she was a customer on the app and she found me at this pop-up store that we had at Westfield that they very kindly paid for and made for us right after she gave birth, because she really wanted to invest in By Rotation. She insisted and said I don't know if you have a round open, but I just I really want to get involved in this. How can I get involved? How can I write you a check? And I was like, okay, like you know, she has used the product. She's's very serious. She really wants to back me, and it's nice to have a Singaporean Indian woman who is doing so well on the other side of the table, because I do want to see more representation of you know female VCs, people of color VCs who are able to write the tickets themselves without waiting for the rest of their team to do so.

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 31:11

I want to give a shout out to Divia Thani. She's the editor of Condé Nast Traveler. I'm so happy to see more you know people of color in these pages, because people need to hear our voices and see things from our perspective. She's been very supportive. I think she just moved to London, maybe a couple of years ago, and she's killing it in the travel space and apparently the travel industry is like the industry of 2024. So definitely someone to watch.

Amardeep Parmar: 31:40

Yeah, like heard of all of those guys. Well, I could have been on the podcast before, but the others are amazing as well. So next question if people want to find out more about you, more about By Rotation, where should they go to?

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 31:50

They should definitely download the free app. It's called ByRotation, so B-Y rotation, not B-U-Y. Do not buy. The whole point is not to buy. It's free to download. We love men, women, everyone on the app, and you can also find us on our social media, which is ByRotation, or our website, byrotation. com. And if you want to follow me, you can find me on Linkedin, uh, Eshita Kabra. Or you can follow me on instagram, which is aren't you, Eshita?

Amardeep Parmar: 32:18

if you know the show, curb your enthusiasm, you'll understand why my name is that Amardeep Parmar: and is there anything that you need help with right now or by rotation, needs help with that the audience can help you with?

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 32:26

There's this really great movement that has been created, which is more about women. It's called Buy Women Built, and it's a very simple saying, which is if you cannot invest in women, then buy products that are made by women. So use the By Rotation app if you're not investing in us.

Amardeep Parmar: 32:43

Awesome, so thanks so much for coming on today. Have you got any final words to the audience?

Eshita Kabra-Davies: 32:47

Thanks so much for having me on the show and I hope to see the people who are tuning in on the By Rotation app.

Amardeep Parmar: 32:54

Thank you for watching, don't forget to subscribe.

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