Behind Her Empire Podcast: Luxury Brand Cuyana's Co-Founder on Why Balance Is BS

Yasmin Nouri

Yasmin is the host of the "Behind Her Empire" podcast, focused on highlighting self-made women leaders and entrepreneurs and how they tackle their career, money, family and life.

Each episode covers their unique hero's journey and what it really takes to build an empire with key lessons learned along the way. The goal of the series is to empower you to see what's possible & inspire you to create financial freedom in your own life.

Behind Her Empire Podcast: Luxury Brand Cuyana's Co-Founder on Why Balance Is BS
Cuyana

On this episode of the Behind Her Empire podcast, hear from Shilpa Shah, co-founder and chief experience officer for Cuyana, a fashion brand that focuses on luxury brands and quality apparel and accessories, offering "fewer, better things" to women at an affordable price.


Key Takeaways:

  • Shah and Karla Gallardo, co-founder and CEO of Cuyama, met in business school and pioneered the affordable luxury, direct-to-consumer brand, launched in 2011.
  • Cuyana rolled out product slowly — one by one, country by country — to see product fit and if customers would return for a radically different product before they put all their energy behind marketing them.
  • Shah and Gallardo applied deep quantitative and qualitative analysis to develop the messaging for the brand — "a full ethnography."
  • Shah and Gallardo focused on deeply understanding the business first before raising money — instead of the other way around.
  • When pitching to investors, the founders were very metrics-driven. They found women understood the problem Cuyana was trying to solve more than men.
"I feel that it's almost a crime that we don't teach everyone a certain level of business for them to be successful in this world." — Shilpa Shah

Shilpa Shah is the co-founder and CXO of Cuyama.


Want to hear more of the Behind Her Empire podcast? Subscribe on Stitcher, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, iHeart Radio or wherever you get your podcasts.

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Genies Wants To Help Creators Build ‘Avatar Ecosystems’

Christian Hetrick

Christian Hetrick is dot.LA's Entertainment Tech Reporter. He was formerly a business reporter for the Philadelphia Inquirer and reported on New Jersey politics for the Observer and the Press of Atlantic City.

Genies Wants To Help Creators Build ‘Avatar Ecosystems’

When avatar startup Genies raised $150 million in April, the company released an unusual message to the public: “Farewell.”

The Marina del Rey-based unicorn, which makes cartoon-like avatars for celebrities and aims to “build an avatar for every single person on Earth,” didn’t go under. Rather, Genies announced it would stay quiet for a while to focus on building avatar-creation products.

Genies representatives told dot.LA that the firm is now seeking more creators to try its creation tools for 3D avatars, digital fashion items and virtual experiences. On Thursday, the startup launched a three-week program called DIY Collective, which will mentor and financially support up-and-coming creatives.

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Here's What To Expect At LA Tech Week

Christian Hetrick

Christian Hetrick is dot.LA's Entertainment Tech Reporter. He was formerly a business reporter for the Philadelphia Inquirer and reported on New Jersey politics for the Observer and the Press of Atlantic City.

Here's What To Expect At LA Tech Week

LA Tech Week—a weeklong showcase of the region’s growing startup ecosystem—is coming this August.

The seven-day series of events, from Aug. 15 through Aug. 21, is a chance for the Los Angeles startup community to network, share insights and pitch themselves to investors. It comes a year after hundreds of people gathered for a similar event that allowed the L.A. tech community—often in the shadow of Silicon Valley—to flex its muscles.

From fireside chats with prominent founders to a panel on aerospace, here are some highlights from the roughly 30 events happening during LA Tech Week, including one hosted by dot.LA.

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