Coutloot’s pre-loved fashion platform is second to noneRatn Nautiyal
“I can’t wear that to work.”
”What do I do with all these clothes? Argh!”
“Maybe some other time.”
Chances are you’ve had these thoughts when you last looked at your wardrobe. Well, you’re not alone; a lot of us have clothes that were previously loved, but haven’t been used in ages. However, it would still break your heart to give away such fashionable clothes for free. So what do you do then? Enter Coutloot.
Coutloot helps people sell their branded clothes to buyers who’re interested in buying used, affordable, branded apparel. Jasmeet Thind, co-founder of Coutloot says, “We wear only 20per cent of what we own. What about the remaining 80per cent, which we hardly used? This is the exact problem ‘CoutLoot’ is trying to solve, the problem of “excess”. CoutLoot is a curated marketplace service for people to buy and sell authentic, pre-loved and pre-owned fashion, where the seller can earn easy cash for his unused branded items and the buyer can buy the best brands at more than 70 percent off. Everything is hassle free and in great condition.”
Jasmeet tells us more about how sellers and buyers connect with each other, “CoutLoot provides free pick-up service to the seller selling his/her items on coutloot.com. On receipt of the product, CoutLoot's on board stylists personally authenticate each item for quality purposes and then propose a listing price to the seller,post which CoutLoot shoots the product and puts it up on the website for sale. Once sold, CoutLoot handles the shipping and delivery for the seller.
CoutLoot CEO and co-founder Jasmeet Thind came up with this idea. “The idea is very personal and inspired from everyday arguments with my own mom over my wardrobe. With the boom in online shopping, I used to buy new things every week without getting rid of my old stuff. My closet started overflowing and I didn't have the space to stock my new buys. I didn't even want to give away my older shirt, t-shirts or shoes. That’s when the idea of CoutLoot struck, what if we could sell things from our own closet for some money?” Jasmeet says.
“I had already noticed a lot of people doing this on Instagram or Facebook groups. But there was no common platform to do it. I didn't want to sell my stuff on other platforms like OLX/Quikr, because I was too pessimistic about posting an ad and then talking to people about it for the sale. I wished someone could do it for me.”
CoutLoot is a white glove service for sellers that provides start-to-finish services for the seller.
There are currently four permanent members in CoutLoot – Jasmeet Thind (25), Mahima Kaul (22), Sahil Khimavat (25) and Vinit Jain (22). All of them are young and energetic. Jasmeet says, “When I got this idea, I immediately approached Mahima, who was also my junior in college. I knew she was the one who'd be facing this issue more than I did. I shared the idea with her and she immediately jumped for joy saying, “I wish there was a platform did this.” That's when both of us started initial work on the startup. At the same time, Sahil who is my school friend met me with his startup idea, which was very close to what we were trying to build at CoutLoot. Sahil immediately joined the team and things started moving faster. When it came to having a tech guy on board, we knew there was only one person who could pull this off for us. That’s when Vinit, who previously also did tech for 'The Bayside Journal' came onboard as the tech co-founder and things started to fall into place.”
Apart from the founding team, CoutLoot also has four other members who help them with Fashion, Operations and Design.
Jasmeet says, “Getting the initial team in place was very disheartening. We had a couple of people who left due to their own personal interests, which made the initial setup process a little slower and tested our patience. When we started building CoutLoot, none of us were doing this full time. We would all go to our day jobs or colleges and build CoutLoot late in the nights. Initially, it was really difficult for us to get the pieces together because of constrained resources. Then things fell in place and CoutLoot has been live since September 2015.”
Moment which touched the heart
Jasmeet recounts an incident involving Coutloot and his family that helped him take the plunge.“While I was building CoutLoot, my mother got diagnosed with a serious health condition. While we were going through her treatments, she asked me one thing, if I believed in the idea that I was working on. On hearing my answer, she said, 'Then give this all you have, I'll be fine'. That's what led me to quit my fancy job and build my dream with all my heart and soul. What's funny about the conversation is that, we all go find inspiration in books, places, successful people and movies. But inspiration is right at home. That conversation changed me.”
Coutlook is been doing really good, from September till present Coutlook has done more than 500 pickups. And during this time period their order have reached a high of 200. Jasmeet proudly says that the site has started gaining about 500 views daily. Happy about the successful initial feedback, Jasmeet updates us regarding his future plan. Jasmeet says that the plan is very simple. They want to provide the service all over India, and then take it global. CoutLoot currently does pickup for sellers in Mumbai, Delhi, Pune and Bangalore, and plans to add eight more cities to the list by the end of 2015, and all major Tier 1 and 2 cities by the first half of next year. CoutLoot delivers products all over India. Jasmeet says “We have also started sourcing celebrity pre-loved fashion and will be selling fashion from celebrity closets in a few months from now.”
He adds, “We are building an Android app, which will be launched soon and will have a first-of-its-kind selling experience in the country. Tackling scale and quality service are the two main objectives for us at CoutLoot. The vision is to lead the fashion re-commerce platform in India within the next couple of years.”
CoutLoot, currently bootstrapped, will also open itself for the first round of funding post the app launch and build a team that delivers the bestselling and buying experience for the crores of existing and new Indian internet users.
This space is attracting a lot of new players, as the segment becomes interesting startups like Rekinza, Envoged, Elanic, Spoyl and a few others are trying their own luck with different business models.
About this competition Jasmeet says “While Elanic & Spoyl are an app only platform, Envoged & Rekinza do their commerce over a website. These startups also focus on different buyer segments, largely between luxury & hi-street. While Elanic, Envoged, Rekinza are only into Womens Preloved fashion, CoutLoot & Spoyl are into both Preloved Mens & Womens segment.”