A now-cancelled post on TheRodinhoods, last week, suggested that The Smile Group promoted Fashion and You is planning to buy UrbanTouch.com, and that UrbanTouch founder Abhishek Goyal will take over as the CEO of Fashion And You. In response to a query about the deal from MediaNama, both Harish Bahl (Founder, Smile Group) and Abhishek Goyal declined to confirm or deny the development. When we asked Goyal about discussions with Fashion And You about a potential acquisition, Goyal gave a boilerplate “we discuss many things with many people” response. Bahl, currently travelling in the US, responded via email saying “At this stage we are not in a position to accept or deny the news.”
Both companies are e-commerce ventures based in Gurgaon and focused on fashion, and it is not clear whether a deal is being discussed. Fashion And You is focused primarily on flash sales, while UrbanTouch has an online retail model in the personal care category.
Alok Kejriwal, who canceled the The Rodinhoods post after the poster “Dhaval Atre” apparently did not prove any of the unsubstantiated allegations about Fashion And You made in that post. Kejriwal wrote:
- The management of FNU has approached me and advised me that this is a false post.
- The CFO named in the post has refuted the claims. I have personally spoken to him.
- I have been in touch with Sequoia Capital and they have supported FNU. (I know VCs well. If FNU was guilty, they would NOT say it to me; rather they would keep quiet).
- Employees are hurting and expressing their anguish here.
However, that doesn’t discount the fact that both parties haven’t outrightly denied the acquisition.
Fashion And You has been looking for a CEO since its co-founder Pearl Uppal left in June this year, shortly after her husband, Gaurav Kachru, quit as the CEO of another Smile Group company Deals And You. He was replaced by Ryan Valles. In November last year, Fashion And You had raised $40 million from Norwest Venture Partners and Mayfield Fund.