Klip, a social eCommerce startup raises a seed round from Mumbai Angels. How have they evolved?
Klip.in started out as a personalized shopping website. Founded by Harsh Gadia and Maneesh Madambath, Klip was in a way incubated by Smursh Media, a company the duo has been running from five years. Since their launch in 2011, Klip also went through acceleration at Venture Nursery and recently raised a seed round from Mumbai Angels, Arihant Patni, managing director at Hive Technologies; and Jeffrey Keng Yew Lai, director, New Zealand-based Emje Investments. Over time, their model has also changed.
The model has evolved quite a bit even though our core approach of connecting people to their relevant products remains the same. What we were trying to solve with Klip earlier was a problem of making a better buying decision across product categories such as Electronics and Books. However, as we moved along, we realized how consumer behavior considerably differs with each product categories and solving all of them on one platform would be a mammoth task. That’s when we went back to the drawing board and with the help of the incubation program at Venture Nursery, dived deep into consumer behavior and the problems they faced across product categories. During this exercise, one common and a very relevant problem that stood out was of product discovery for non-standardized items in fashion and lifestyle space. This is specially pertaining to the long tail of Ecommerce where every day we see a host of individual designers, offline retailers and brands selling quirky lifestyle products. They do not have a deep marketing budget to reach out to their audience and Consumers on the other hand cannot find these small sites floating on the web. This is where Klip now comes in to bridge the gap by socially curating such products on one platform. (more on the blog)
The funding journey and revenue model
Our funding journey has been quiet long and was sort of broken in 2 parts. Initially we got a great platform through Venture Nursery to present to their Angels and raise our initial round. Post that, we saw a lot of interest in this space from several other angel members individually and through networks as well. That’s when we kept the round open and got additional investors from Mumbai Angels and few individual and International investors on board as well.
The funds would primarily be used in product and technology. We want to personalize the experience of users on Klip based on their interest and networks. Thus, investment would go to build those algorithms and recommendation engines. Apart from that, we will be focusing a lot on Mobile in future for which we want to lay down the product foundation now.
Currently we have tied up with an affiliate network for commissions on any transaction that happens through Klip. On a long-term basis, we would be looking at advertising as a possible monetization strategy with targeted advertising products for online stores.
Traction and trends
We launched the new version of Klip around a couple of months back and since then have received 1000+ users based on the initial outreach efforts within our networks. These users spend an average of approximately 6 minutes on the site.
The biggest trend for us has been the habit of Klipping for users. We have seen average number of Klips/user increase a lot over a period of time. We have seen users who at a stretch have klipped more than 200 products with over 1000 products overall. This is something that is very encouraging for us as it shows the engagement level a user has with the product. Challenge now is to replicate this amongst many such users to build the right community.