Rooja.com, an eCommerce venture aims to provide a premium and deeply fashion focused experience to its consumers. Rooja handpicks the trendiest apparel and accessories from high-street labels, luxury brands and independent fashion labels that are not easily available elsewhere in India.Founded by Rajarshi Chatterjee, Manit Kathuria and Mudit Khurana, Rooja has a 15 member strong team. Having had global exposure in terms of education and also starting up, the founding trio has a varied skill set. With a technology background and a corporate stint with Cisco, Rajarshi is the Head of Technology. Having founded Axiom Ads previously, Manit heads design and marketing while Mudit is the Creative head and looks after Business development.
Based out of New Delhi, Rooja was founded in March 2011 and launched in December 2011. “We are on a mission to surprise our customers with the best fashion inspiration and a fast, easy and affordable way to realize it. Every day, we offer handpicked and highly curated selections in line with the latest fashion trends from across the globe. Customers can access their favorite high street and luxury brands and discover new designers and products not found elsewhere. We focus on quality fashion with accessible prices,” (Ticket Price Rs. 1500 – Rs. 5000) says Rajarshi.
Here is a look at the market size they’re targeting:
“We work on margins ranging from 25-75%. At the moment we are working on a daily flash sales business model, which is mostly on a consignment basis” informs Rajarshi. Their average ticket size is INR 3350. Rooja has over 150 brands featured on the site and have tied up with several high street, luxury and independent brands in the US, Europe, Australia and Asia. “At the moment we are trying to expand our existing customer base and build our brand to make Rooja synonymous with the best fashion inspiration in India.” says Manit.
Rooja is currently self-funded and is on the look for a funding round to expand and accelerate their growth. Why did they pick fashion? Here's what they had to say:
- In 2010 we realized that the e-commerce players existing in India were selling the same products everywhere the customer experience was poor in terms of how these websites were designed and the products they were offering. We felt that these websites lack taste and aren’t focused for a more premium and focused customer.
- In the madness to scale up a few of the websites have worsened and they offer everything from luxury handbags to towels to lamps to speakers to toys to electronics to lingerie to bed linen to kitchen appliances to hookahs to toys and everything you can imagine of. It’s hard to concentrate on a focused quality customer experience when you sell products across so many categories.
- Another huge problem we felt was that the websites are selling the same mass brands like Nike, Levis, Lee, Arrow, United Colors of Benetton. These brands are often non-exclusive and it is hard to look different wearing them.
- Lastly we felt there is a genuine lack of choice for unique designer fashion at an affordable price. Very few cities have access to brands like Zara, Vero Moda and Mango, Charles and Keith etc. Indian designer wear and luxury is not accessible for a lot of people who appreciate great fashion and aspire to look different.
With these points in mind, the founders started Rooja and are moving up with an impressive trajectory. They have generated close to 40 Lakh INR in revenues and are buoyant about the future.