[Funding alert] Social ecommerce platform CityMall raises funds from M&S Partners, other angel investors
Vernacular social ecommerce platform, CityMall, has announced it has raised an undisclosed amount of funding from a clutch of angel investors including - Jitendra Gupta of Citrus Pay; Alvin Tse of Xiaomi; Manish Vij and Harish Bahl from Smile Group, Rishab Malik, ex-co-founder of Droom; Rajesh Sawhney of GSF and M&S Partners among other marquee investors.
Founded in early 2019 by Angad Kikla, Divij Goyal and Naisheel Verdhan, CityMall sells lifestyle and household products with curated special discounted deals through peer to peer referrals via WhatsApp. In just a few months, the company claims to have grown from 50 to 750 orders per day, and is currently growing at 50 percent growth rate on a weekly basis.
Speaking about the platform, Angad Kikla, Co-founder, CityMall, said:
“We have received tremendous support from our investors, and this funding will help us technologically develop and strengthen our supply chain while keeping our growth plans intact. We also focus on differentiated customer experiences that play a big role among the price conscious audience enabling them to purchase online more easily.”
CityMall plans to scale its growth to 20,000 orders a day in the next 12 months. City Mall sells household and lifestyle items and focuses on curating special discounted deals being leveraged via the networks of individual customers within WhatsApp.
According to key investor Hiro Mashita, Founder and Director of M&S Partners Singapore,
“CityMall plans to cater to 200 million middle class price sensitive buyers with women belonging to the Tier II, III, and IV cities of India. They are marginally technologically inclined, and typically social buyers. Through CityMall, we have found a platform that couples this behavior and seamlessly integrates with WhatsApp to provide a differentiated way of shopping online”
The company gives discounted offers on a product selected, post which, each individual then shares the item within their personal network in the WhatsApp to gain referral deals on the items purchased.
With very low prices, this mechanism motivates users to have a more dynamic and interactive shopping experience.
CityMall’s model not only benefits consumers but also manufacturers, as direct shipping eliminates layers of middlemen therefore raising the profit.
On why CityMall chose WhatsApp as a medium, Co-Founder Divij Goyal said,
“WhatsApp is the most penetrated social network in small town India with maximum amount of time spent by a user on this platform. Using WhatsApp will provide very strong view-ability of deals shared for our products as compared to other social platforms like SMS. We will be doubling down on leveraging WhatsApp for downstream ecommerce workflows with more languages soon.”
CityMall’s targets audience are women in small town India. They range between the ages of 25-34 years and are one of the fastest-growing customer segment.
With this funding, the company plans to add more women centric products in addition to more languages on the platform soon.
(Edited by Megha Reddy)