Online marketplace for ethnic products Craftsvilla.com, today announced that it has secured USD 34 million in Series C funding led by Sequoia India and Lightspeed Venture Partners, with participation from Nexus Venture Partners, Global Founders Capital and Apoletto. The funds will be deployed to build engineering and product capabilities, enhance customer care, and scaling in the ethnic category to reach $500 Million GMV in the next 12 months. Craftsvilla, is currently experiencing over 6x YoY growth and it’s already the sixth largest e-commerce company in India in terms of GMV.
The company had earlier raised Rs 110 crore led by Sequoia Capital with participation by Lightspeed Ventures, Global Founders Capital and Nexus Venture Partners.
Founded in 2011 by Manoj Gupta and Monica Gupta, Mumbai-based Craftsvilla, has built the online ethnic marketplace with close to 3.5 million unique products from more than 25,000 artisans and designers across the country. Craftsvilla claims to reach more than a million customers everyday through its website and mobile app. CEO & Co-founder of Craftsvilla.com, Manoj Gupta said,
We believe we are one of the leanest and most capital efficient online marketplaces in India with best demand and supply side metrics.
How investors see it
Shailendra Singh, Managing Director, Sequoia Capital India Advisors believes that Craftsvilla has risen to category leadership in the ethnic space with a lean marketplace model that has scaled in an unusually capital efficient manner. Bejul Somaia, Managing Director, Lightspeed India Partners Advisors LLP mentioned that Craftsvilla has grown using a lean cost structure which is rarely seen in today’s e-commerce ecosystem. He added,
We look forward to working together with Craftsvilla to create one of the first profitable companies in India.
For Sandeep Singhal, Founding Partner, Nexus Venture Partners, Craftsvilla’s vision to create a great ethnic empire is very bold and creating great social impact along with economic impact. According to Oliver Samwer, Founder Rocket Internet, there's a big virgin opportunity outside of India in the ethnic space which makes Craftsvilla an exciting online marketplace to watch out for in coming years.
There are three interesting developments worth noting with this announcement:
- For the first time, we have heard investors talking about going to the global market.
- We have an indication of an IPO as well, even if it's 12-18 months down the line.
- Craftsvilla is eyeing profitability, or at least one of the investors is keen to see it happening.
Among niche e-commerce firms, women focused online fashion store Limeroad raised $30 million in March 2015 followed by baby care products e-tailer FirstCry which raised $10 million in April while the e-commerce portal for Indian moms Hopscotch had raised $11 million in January 2015. Most recent has been the Rs 250 crore funding round of Zivame which was announced in September 2015. When Alibaba announced its Singles Day GMV of $14.3 billion, it had put Indian e-commerce into two major brackets:
- Where do we stand today when compared to Chinese e-commerce, irrespective to how irrational the comparison is?
- What is the size of opportunity/market Indian e-commerce giants are chasing?
What do you think, let us know in the comments below?