Star Tech: Emirati start-up creates world's first artificial intelligence kandura tailor service

More than 4,700 customers have already registered on the platform


Joydeep Sengupta

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Published: Sat 23 Apr 2022, 10:06 PM

Emirati startup, CanCan, is revolutionising the way consumers buy kanduras, with a ground-breaking, convenient, price-competitive artificial intelligence (AI) platform.

The world’s first and only application in the traditional menswear market to use artificial intelligence (AI) body-scanning technology, CanCan takes accurate measurements through a mobile phone camera and delivers a quality kandura four days later.

Backed by prominent Emirati businessman Sultan Al Darmaki, the unique technology-meets-tradition start-up was founded in 2019 by four Emirati entrepreneurs who identified a gap in the kandura-buying market. Using their professional, managerial, and entrepreneurial experience, Saleh Hamed, Mohamed Al Jneibi, Yaqoob Al Shehhi and Khalid Al Hashimi developed, fine-tuned, and raised funds for the service when the Covid-19 pandemic struck.

More than 4,700 customers have already registered on the platform, and the mobile application is available on the App Store or Google Play. At last count, it was downloaded over 10,000 times.

Al Darmaki, Chairman of Al Darmaki Group, invested in CanCan as part of his commitment to continuing his father Saeed Sultan Al Darmak’s legacy by supporting new and upcoming pioneers in the UAE.

“CanCan is living proof that homegrown ideas and concepts work in the UAE and internationally, and a catalyst for others to take risks and explore new territory. The team is harnessing innovation to deliver a product that is integral to our culture in a way that suits today’s fast-paced lifestyles and consumers’ increasing reliance on technology. I’m delighted to be part of this exciting new venture, and to promote growth among young, forward-thinking entrepreneurs,” he said.

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The business house was formed in the 1960s and has interests in the real estate, retail, and trading sectors. Al Darmaki had invested in the film industry internationally, and now he is a patron of Emirati movies and also involved in arts and culture initiatives. Saeed Sultan Al Darmaki who, among other achievements, helped launch the National Bank of Abu Dhabi (NBAD), which is now called First Abu Dhabi Bank following its merger with First Gulf Bank (FGB) in 2017.

Saleh Hamed, co-founder and Managing Director (MD) of CanCan, explained the unique selling proposition (USP) of CanCan.

“CanCan is the world’s first and only application in the traditional menswear market to use A.I body-scanning technology. CanCan takes accurate measurements through a mobile phone camera and then delivers a quality kandura four days later. It’s a ground-breaking, convenient and price competitive service that is revolutionising the way kanduras are purchased,” he said.

How accurate is CanCan’s service?

CanCan uses advanced technology to scan body measurements with pinpoint accuracy. The kandura is made to measure in the same way that it would be if it were to come from a traditional tailor.

There is a discernible gap in the kandura-buying market, Saleh said.

“Until now, there has been no real option other than visiting a tailor when buying a kandura. CanCan bridges that gap. Most market segments have been virtualised now — think Instashop, Uber, Careem and Talabat, for example — but the kandura buying experience was being left behind. That’s no longer the case: with CanCan you get a quality kandura in a matter of days and eliminate the need to physically visit a tailor. It’s a real case of technology meeting tradition,” he added.

“There is a huge demand for CanCan because Ramadan is traditionally among the busiest times of the year for buying a kandura,” Saleh said.

“Currently, Kuwaiti and Arabic (Emirati) style kanduras are available in a wide range of quality materials and colours, with additional ranges in the pipeline as the company expands to enter new markets and reflect other countries’ styles and preferences,” he added.

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