Neha Singh: the new flagship shops are online

Most online shops today are based on the same 25-year-old tile design. Neha Singh, founder and CEO of the e-commerce platform Obsess, wants to change this with her 360-degree online shops. She explained why investors thought this was worth USD 3.4 million in a video and at the GDI International Retail Summit.

We all know that humans are social beings. That’s why we seek interaction, not least when we go shopping. What has recently become very clear as a result of the coronavirus pandemic is that we need to find alternatives for times and situations when face-to-face contact isn’t possible.

Experiential e-commerce

The US American Neha Singh is working on just such an alternative with her start-up Obsess. In her 3D virtual stores, visitors can shop as if they were physically there. Singh calls this “experiential e-commerce”. Above all, product categories that first have to be discovered can be presented virtually in a way that appeals to those visiting the website. Singh’s company and the business model she sells have experienced a major boost during the pandemic: “Today, retailers see the online shop as their new flagship shop,” she says. This also means saying goodbye to the 25-year-old e-commerce design à la Amazon, she adds.

USD 3.4 million in funding

Using augmented and virtual reality, Singh has already built more than 60 virtual shops for global brands such as Tommy Hilfiger, Samsung and Christian Dior. Customers no longer need VR glasses or special apps to visit the virtual stores. During the pandemic, she raised USD 3.4 million in seed capital for her business venture. Singh shows what her shops look like here in the video and at the 71st International Retail Summit.