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Modanisa - Using Technology to dominate the Hijab Fashion Market

A Turkish start-up Modanisa found a unique way to solve the problem that millions of Muslim women face on a daily basis, i.e. how to find quality and fashionable modest wear that complies with their Islamic faith and identity. Modanisa used technology as a tool to solve this problem and soon captured the Muslim fashion market comprehensively, all making use of their website and mobile apps.

The Muslim fashion industry is worth more than $200 billion, according to recent estimates, yet a very tiny portion of those funds are online. Modanisa jumped at the opportunity to participate in a movement to promote modest fashion, and providing Muslim girls more fashion-forward options.

Founded by a serial entrepreneur and a retail consultant, the startup wants to provide “choice in modest wear aligned with faith” to 400 million Muslim women across the globe. The UK is currently Modanisa's fourth biggest marketplace, and the organization plans on developing a "social hijab hub" using the power of technology.

The problem which Modanisa solves

Despite the fact that there's an enormous marketplace, Muslim women's style needs were under-addressed for ages. The Western style business used to believe that Muslim women's style was all about black plain abayas.

Apart from that, local manufacturers were copying what they were doing for several decades. So there was a serious lack of creativity and innovation in the Muslim fashion industry. There was no one who catered to the needs of the Muslim women who were fashion savvy.

Sensing the opportunity, Modanisa jumped into the industry using technology as its tool to capture the market and to promote hijab fashion not only for the Muslim populace but for the non-Muslim world too. So in a nutshell, we can equate Modanisa to “hijab fashion”.

Modanisa's Unique Benefit

Modanisa's largest advantage is their strategic geographic location: Modanisa is situated in Turkey, that's the largest traditional fashion marketplace in the world these days. Turkey has got better manufacturing quality and speed; they now have the fantastic benefit of superior textile manufacturing quality in Turkey; in just a 25-mile radius shape Modanisa's Istanbul headquarters you may spot over 400 medium-sized textile producers. The homeland benefits above help them climb and supply better deals and better quality. They mostly ship parcels to European towns in two days.

The idea that led to Modanisa

The idea did not come to them in a minute but through a long observation procedure. Individuals around them were speaking about how hard would be to discover hijab-friendly clothing in "contemporary" retail shops and everyone was complaining about the lack of variety and the high rates. Kerim was in Mecca at 2009, and there were huge populations of Muslim women but not one contemporary Muslim retail brand for the Muslim female demographic.

Millions of Muslim girls were either buying from little standard hijab and abaya stores or by hijab stalls. Modanisa's founders saw that a couple of contemporary conservative shops that existed were performing better than their "non-conservative" competitions. They chose to build an internet shop, convince the manufacturers to create hijab-friendly, conservative clothing for them, and serve that industry globally.

Growth of Modanisa

In May 2011 they began with two full-time workers and to outsource their e-commerce platform in a 150 square meters office (like the warehouse). Since that moment, Modanisa climbed 4.2 times, normally, each year. They have 4.5 million people visit their site monthly, 109 full-time workers, 35 percent of Modanisa's earnings are global and their warehouse has become 7,500 square meters.

Technological Problems in Modanisa’s Way

Payment methods in certain Muslim parts of the world are limited. Also, the delivery costs are quite high in certain Middle Eastern and African nations and all this restricts the e-commerce potential. Usage of the internet in the Muslim countries is a bit lower than the Western world but that is currently growing very rapidly.

Wrap up

The startup culture is growing at a very rapid speed in Muslim countries, especially tech start-ups. Modanisa is a glowing example of this that will give positive inspiration to even more Muslim entrepreneurs to come up with similar ideas to solve the problems that the Muslim populace in their countries faces. And as the people in the Muslim countries embrace the internet and technology, there is a big potential for such technology start-ups to capture big market shares in their respective industries.