Unable to raise capital, Yebhi halts its marketplace model; pivots to a product discovery platform
Finally, Yebhi has had to shut down its online marketplace platform. It has now pivoted to being a fashion discovery and redirection site. The new business model will now list products from scores of online fashion stores and help customers to find the most relevant products and coupons through personalized recommendations.
The Gurgaon-based company seems to have been forced to pivot its business model as it was unable to raise further capital to operate the marketplace model. Yebhi’s initial investors Catamaran Fund and Nexus Venture Partners have written off their investment from the company.
“Fashion etailing has evolved significantly in India and customers are seeking more information and engagement before purchasing a product. We are changing Yebhi to address these customers. We are bringing them variety from all the online and local stores, showing them prices with discounts & offers across these stores, and guiding them to products that would most suit their tastes, social circles and body structure,” says Danish Ahmed, CEO of Yebhi.
Earlier in 2014 Nitin Aggarwal, one of Yebhi’s co-founder had left the company. It had raised over $30 million venture capital money in three rounds. At present, the site has over 2 million customers and 3 million monthly visitors.
“Ecommerce is a very capital intensive industry and companies will continue to burn a lot of capital to acquire more customers. We decided to move out of that space and leverage our learnings and brand value to build a business that is highly profitable and scalable. We are building a business which is capital efficient and at the same time consumer efficient in today’s scenario,” adds Danish.
Pivoting business model makes a ton of sense for Yebhi as its marketplace was anyway in stealth mode for a long time. The company has a consumer base of over 2 million, which could be a major driver (for founders) to float product discovery platform. There was no option left for Yebhi as it didn’t manage to convince any other player for acquisition or merger.