Wearable clothing may sound like a redundancy, but it’s a real thing and it’s an expanding category with promise in the fitness industry. Athos, one of a handful of startups building out its wearable clothing brand, recently closed on $35 million in Series C financing from a number of investors, including Social+Capital.
The startup faces some nominal competition from wearable fitness clothing startups Hexoskin and OmSignal, as well as Heddoko, which makes 3D movement tracking suits, but it’s still early days here. Most of these types of companies launched their products in just the last year. The first Athos products started shipping six months ago, according to the startup.
Chamath Palihapitiya’s firm led the round, with participation from apparel giant MAS Holdings, Lightspeed Venture and Felix Capital. Previous investors also chimed in, including True Ventures, Partners, DCM and the Golden State Warriors managing partner Joe Lacob.
The new funding now puts the total raised near $51 million and gives Athos some runway to create new products and to continue growing the business.
“While we’re still a relatively small team, we’re continuing to hire in critical positions and we’ve been able to hire some great people who are really excited about what we’re doing,” Athos CEO Dhananja Jayalath said.
Two of those recent hires include COO Don Faul who held executive and leadership roles at Pinterest, Facebook and Google and VP of product Rose Yao, who led Product for Photos at Facebook.
This round also goes to support a continued investment in innovation across hardware and software, according to Jayalath.
“You’ll see us continue to iterate rapidly on both the software and hardware to continue to push the boundaries and set the standard in smart clothing,” Jayalath told TechCrunch. “You’ll see new garments that will fit better, look better and perform better. And you’ll see our software evolve to deliver incredibly powerful yet simple insights customized to your goals.”
I visited Athos HQ about this same time last year to check out a prototype of the product. You can see that interview in the video below. It’s nice to see how far Athos has come since then.