Boksha, an Emirati-founded tech start-up, has secured $1 million from a group of investors, which includes Sandooq Al Watan and family offices.
Founded in 2018, the platform is the largest online marketplace for independent fashion designers in the region offering Khaleeji themes. This is the company’s first raise; it has bootstrapped itself since then to offering over 15,000 SKUs, representing over 800 designers, and shipping to over 40 countries worldwide to date.
The name Boksha, derived from an Arab Gulf dialect, refers to a piece of fabric traditionally used as a pouch or head carrier by female merchants for the storage of their garments and goods. The brand represents the small and independent, with a mission of empowering the region’s independent fashion designers with technology, so that they can expand their local reach to become global players.
“We are very excited about our next chapter post-funding closing and see tremendous growth opportunities in the region.” Yahya Mohamed Saleh, co-founder and CEO said. “Not only do we see this as a largely scalable business, but also one with significant social impact in terms of job creation, individual empowerment and export of regional talent.”
He also added: “More than 90% of our designers are Emirati females between the age of 18-35 years old. We expect to see a very similar demographic as we expand regionally”.
He concluded: “Through our platform and tools, we believe we can give our designers access to a multi-billion-dollar fashion market globally – something most of them didn’t have access to before.”
For her part, Hind Baker, Director-General of Sandooq Al Watan, said: “Sandooq Al Watan is a national initiative launched by prominent Emirati businessmen to support innovators and talented Emiratis, and create every opportunity for them to thrive and unleash their full potential."
“We are delighted to be supporting Boksha – an inspired homegrown startup that draws from the culture and heritage of the Gulf region, while tapping into advanced technology,” Baker added.
The company will utilize the funds to scale up operationally and further invest in its technology to enter new markets in the region, starting with the GCC.