The home furnishing segment has caught up with the booming e-commerce industry. Apart from news of funding, mergers and acquisitions are now part of the game. We recently covered a piece on consolidation of the home and furnishing segment (read more).
The most recent in this crop is Livspace, which has acquired DezignUp. With the acquisition, Livspace aims to offer more design choices to their customers. “Home owners can now go to a single online destination where they can discover and personalise their homes from a catalogue of different looks. The site is also a community of hundreds of designers,” says Anuj Srivastava, Co-founder of Livspace.
Livspace has been founded by Anuj Srivastava, Shagufta Anurag, and Ramakant Sharma, who come from different backgrounds and play distinct roles at Livspace. It is a team of entrepreneurs, product managers, and technology experts. Anuj Srivastava, an IIT Kanpur alumni, has been a product marketing head for many of Google’s e-commerce and online products in Silicon Valley. Shagufta Anurag is an architect and the Founder of Space Matrix, which is a corporate design company. Ramakant Sharma is an IIT Kanpur alumni and was a VP for engineering at Myntra.
We are inspired by one vision: to build a truly differentiated, technology driven startup out of India. The three of us are possibly the best team that can come together to build Livspace.
He further explains that collectively, the team has over 20 years of experience in building e-commerce and online products, and over 15 years in designing 25,000 plus homes, including Fortune 500 corporate premises, through Space Matrix.
While the space of home décor and design is rife with competition, Livspace says it has seen good traction since its last round of funding last year. The team claims that within a quarter of launching their business, they have hit a multi-million dollar run rate and continue to see growth month-on-month. They also state that they have experienced a 1000 percent growth in the past few months.
“Our employee numbers have grown at over 500 percent since we launched the company. We’re growing at a break-neck speed and hiring across the board,” says Anuj. Livspace customers can find a variety of interior designs for all room types and personalise their design (through color, material, and style) to get the desired look for their homes in a matter of weeks.
In India, the home design and decor market is poised to grow to $25 billion by 2015 from $3 billion in 2010, fueled by over 25 per cent YoY growth in the organised retail sector. The internet sector is growing by over 100 per cent QoQ.
Livspace was established with the idea of creating an online marketplace for both home owners and designers that will provide an end-to-end home design and décor experience. Says Anuj: “In DezignUp, we saw a similar blend of scale, intellectual pedigree, and energy. Saurabh, Arpit, and Swati are as good as they come. Young, energetic, and their can-do, will-do spirit was inspiring. We made a very quick decision and are glad to have them join the Livspace family.”
After the acquisition, Livspace hopes to grow across the top metros in the country. The company is hiring across the board for key functions like engineering, design, data scientists, and go-to-market professionals.
Livspace is also looking to use more technology and data science to drive demand. “One growth tactic is to build on our ‘find your apartment’ feature -- where you can find an apartment and then discover designs for your apartment. Consumers love it that they can see designs created for their apartments before they buy it,” concludes Anuj.