With $180M raised as fresh capital, newest unicorn Livspace now looks at market expansion and strategic investments

In a conversation with YourStory, Anuj Srivastava, Co-founder and CEO, Livspace talks about the unicorn’s future plans with the $180 million fundraise.
4 CLAPS
0

Omnichannel home interior and renovation platform,Livspace and global investment firm KKR today announced a $180 million Series F fundraising in the latter, with KKR participating as the lead investor.

The latest funding round, which elevated Livspace to the coveted unicorn club, also saw participation from existing investors such as Ingka Group Investments (part of largest IKEA retailer Ingka Group), Jungle Ventures, Venturi Partners, and Peugeot Investments, among others.

Talking about the fundraise, Ramakant Sharma, Co-founder and COO of Livspace, said, “As the largest player in this industry, we look to expand our spectrum of new offerings for the homeowner, create the best technology for our marketplace partners, and deliver dream homes to our customers across all geographies. With the fresh investments, we are well set up to launch new solutions for homeowners and become the go-to platform brand for all things home.” 

With the funding, Livspace will expand to new markets, focus on brand building in India and Singapore, continue investing in its platform technology and digitally integrated supply chain; and hire, develop and nurture talent across the board to support both new and existing businesses.

Gaurav Trehan, Partner and CEO of KKR India, said, “Anuj and Ramakant have been leaders in evolving the home renovation industry, and KKR looks to draw on our deep technological and operational expertise, as well as our regional and global network, to support Livspace’s continued growth.” 

Anuj Srivastava, Cofounder and CEO of Livspace

The funds will also be channelled towards strategic investments into innovative companies. Livspace recently acquired a majority stake in Qanvast, a Singapore-based home remodelling and design platform. 

Louis Casey, KKR’s Growth Technology Lead in Southeast Asia, added, “Livspace is solving a complicated, multi-stakeholder problem which requires a mix of sophisticated software applications, strong execution capability, and a consumer-centric approach. We believe that over time, this combination of competencies will build a strong competitive advantage that will see Livspace extend its leadership position, enter new markets and broaden its offerings.” 

In a conversation with YourStory, Anuj Srivastava, Co-founder and CEO, Livspace threw light on the company’s plan.

YourStory [YS]: How are you going to utilise the funds? What kind of investments will you make in the brand, technology and talent? And what will be your strategic investments when it comes to brands and acquisitions?

Anuj Srivastava [AS]: With the fresh investments, we will continue to invest aggressively in building the best technology platform for the home improvement industry — investing heavily in visualisation, AI-based recommendations, new experiences to further digitise our experience centres, and enable our partners to onboard on our platform, digitising the overall ecosystem for expansion and digitisation of the fragmented supply chain. 

Furthermore, interiors and renovation are merely the first two verticals that we are focusing on. In the coming months, Livspace will aggressively launch a diverse range of home improvement services in our operational markets.

As we are now operational across geographies, doubling down on brand building is also an important, strategic objective. To support our geographical and vertical expansion, we will be investing in hiring, developing, and nurturing talent — both in India and overseas. Lastly, we will use the funds for strategic investments to bolster our services.

For instance, we have recently acquired a majority stake in Qanvast, a Singapore-based home remodelling and design platform connecting homeowners and trusted home professionals. We will continue to invest in entities with strong brand synergies.

Overall, the investment will be used to fuel our growth across regions and become market leaders. We aim to become the go-to brand for all things home. 

YS: What is Livspace’s playbook to achieve the next level of growth after the recent fundraise?

AS: Since our inception, we have been true to our commitment to organise and provide the best customer experience — across price, timeline, and quality and after-sales service in a massive fragmented home decor industry. 

At a time when the market for horizontal ecommerce has been capped by ecommerce giants, we, at Livspace, have been betting big on bringing a specialised vertical marketplace for large outcomes. 

We have done two things uniquely: first, digitisation of large and complex home improvement industry verticals, and, second, integration of thousands of contractors, designers, and home improvement professionals as well as the largest brands and OEMs in this space.

This playbook has helped us grow quickly and efficiently in different markets and will always remain an important element of Livspace's business model.

Livspace co-founder Ramakant Sharma

YS: What are your plans for new markets across MENA, South East Asia, and Australia in the next two years?

AS: GCC, SE Asia, and Australia present great opportunities for the home renovations and interiors industry. This segment is largely underserved because of its massive segmentation. We see a great opportunity to consolidate the market and offer customers an end-to-end experience when it comes to all things related to home renovations. 

Over the next 24 months, we aim to launch operations first in Saudi Arabia, followed by the UAE, Australia, Malaysia, Indonesia, Vietnam, and Thailand. We will use the current investments to fuel regional growth and become market leaders in the segment across the new geographies. 

YS: Do you have any plans for an IPO?

AS: Currently, there are no firm plans for an IPO. We are focusing on delivering value to all our stakeholders — from our investors, employees, customers, design partners to our vendors. The company's priority over the next few years will be consistent profitability, as well as leveraging growth opportunities.

Despite the continuing disruptions owing to the pandemic, Livspace has succeeded in bringing together a highly fragmented home interior market in India. Since our inception in 2015, Livspace has taken the pole position in the home interiors and renovation segment with a 65 percent market share in 2021.

Our Singapore business is also growing 10-15 percent month-on-month and contributing 20 percent to the overall business. We grew 2x in the last five months; in fact, we witnessed over 400 percent growth in the past 24 months. We will be closing new orders worth $350-400 million by the March 2022 quarter and we are looking at $700 million by 2023. Our India operations broke even in March 2021 and we are expecting company-wide profitability in the next 12 -18 months. 

Edited by Kanishk Singh