Avametric's software creates 3-D images showing how any item of clothing will fit on a user’s body.

Avametric and Gerber Technology have tied the knot, connecting the virtual fabric and fit pioneer with a manufacturing specialist and opening up new tech possibilities for fashion.

By acquiring the six-year-old San Francisco-based Avametric, which worked with Gap on a virtual fitting room, Gerber is positioning itself to address one of the biggest challenges for remote retail.

“Consumers are looking to buy online, but they are still going into brick-and-mortar because they lack confidence in the fit they see online,” said Ari Bloom, Avametric’s chief executive officer.

According to a Deloitte study, as much as 90 percent of retail sales across the globe still hinge on physical stores, where consumers can easily try on garments in fitting rooms.

The challenge helped drive Bloom’s decision to join forces with Gerber, a long-standing player in automation and production with 50 years of experience. Gerber Technology works with 78,000 customers across 130 countries, with clients spanning more than 100 Fortune 500 companies in a variety of markets — including apparel and accessories, home and leisure and others. Gerber itself is owned by AIP, a New York-based private equity firm that focuses on the tech sector and manages more than $3 billion in assets.

With the backing of a staunch new parent company, Bloom said he believes that they can bridge this online shopping “confidence gap.”

The deal marks the culmination of a nearly yearlong relationship between the companies. Since November, Avametric has been integrating its fabric-simulation technology with Gerber’s 3-D design and manufacturing software platform.

Karsten Newbury, senior vice president and general manager of Gerber’s Software Solutions Group, has described the challenge of virtual fitting as a mismatch between new innovations and established systems.

“You may hear and see many other 3-D products on the market,” he said. “We hear from our customers that most of them are not actually using our competitors’ 3-D products because they find them too difficult to use and don’t integrate well with a 2D workflow.”

Notably, Gerber’s AccuMark 3-D software covers 2-D and 3-D applications. With the integration of Avametric’s technology, which touts extremely realistic virtual fabric rendering, the partners sought to develop an end-to-end 3-D platform with a comprehensive range — from consumer-oriented virtual try-on applications all the way to design and production.

Now they see the acquisition as more than just a way to bring those efforts under one umbrella.

“Our team had already recognized Avametric has the best fabric simulation engine in the industry,” said Gerber ceo Mohit Uberoi. “And now we are able to connect consumer-facing virtual try-on software with our Accumark and [product life cycle management software] YuniquePLM platforms to provide an end-to-end workflow that allows our customers to provide their consumers personalized products ‘on demand.’”

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