Footwear brand Plato raises funds from Florintree, others

Mumbai Bengaluru-based Plato, a D2C footwear brand for children, has raised Rs 40 crore in Series A funding led by Florintry Advisors and other investors, Matthew Siriac, former private equity co-head of Blackstone India.

Plato, which designs and distributes high quality footwear, was founded in March 2020 by Ravi Kallayil, Sara Kilgore and Pawan Kareti.

The latest round of funds will be deployed to accelerate the company’s strategic expansion into new markets and product innovation and leverage technology to deepen its consumer-first approach.

Plato has designed several proprietary elements for the growing feet of children. These include the FitSystem, which includes a proprietary Fitliner that delivers an extra shape out of the same product without compromising fit, comfort and performance; Plato 365, a midsole that is responsive, supportive and comfortable even after a year of use and Plato FitWiz, which leverages technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) to create the best fit for every child can be recommended.

“As a technology driven D2C footwear brand, we have always focused on science-based footwear and innovation that meets the Indian requirement. While footwear as a category has seen innovation across the board, including children’s footwear, has remained untouched without any consumer-centric design or performance,” said Kallayil, chief executive officer of Plato Company.

The startup now works with some of the leading schools and educational institutions through its B2B2C channel and all top marketplaces like Amazon, Myntra and Flipkart. Kallayil said its consumer-facing D2C paltform www.plaeto.in is also seeing strong growth since its launch in September 2021.

“The company is seeing a high level of interest from schools and online channels. We are seeing double digital growth online month-on-month. We want to serve 50 lakh consumers in the next five years.”

“We already have offline distribution to serve the school market. We have received good interest from some of the biggest offline players in the Indian market and we are working on that. We aim to create an equitable divide between the offline and online parts of our business over the next five years.”

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