Hi! We are Arian and Sarina, the co-founders of Riya Collective. We’re both Indian-American women and we’ve been best friends for 14 years (since freshman year in college). We went from college roommates to first-job-out-of-college roommates (in NYC) to sharing-a-studio-apartment roommates when we moved to San Francisco together in 2012. We’ve pretty much been here ever since, working on startups in everything from AI to financial technology.
We always knew we wanted to build a company together and what began as a seed of an idea after Sarina’s wedding in 2015 (there should be an Indian Rent the Runway!) turned into us quitting our jobs in 2019 and finally pursuing our dream. It’s been a wild year ever since, full of some of the highest highs and most surprising turns of our career (read: COVID).
Through it all, what became clearest to us is that we are in fact on a much broader mission: to re-invent fashion consumption to be more diverse, sustainable, and equitable. In building the first version of Riya for many years we learned just how broken the current fashion ecosystem is: despite globalization, fashion is still dominated by a few marquee Western brands, the system doesn’t reward those who actually make and design the garments as much as it does the retailer, and it is one of the most polluting industries in the world. We believe we can do so much better.
We are building a platform to represent boutique creatives and designers all over the world and make their clothing accessible to the US consumer. We want to do this in a way that questions every aspect of the supply chain so that our buyer’s dollars go directly to the makers and support an ecosystem that is good for the planet.
We would be honored to have you join us on this journey if you believe, as we do, that something has to change.
Sarina and Arian