Purplle raises a Series A round to bring the $9 billion offline grooming market online
Beauty and grooming eCommerce platform Purplle has raised over $5 million in its Series A round from IvyCap Ventures (though the company statement didn’t disclose the quantum of funding but YourStory’s sources indicate that they raised more than $5 million). The money will be used for growing its marketing efforts and fulfillment capacity. Purplle is an online platform for beauty enthusiasts and professionals, offering personal care products including salon and spa services.
Launched in 2011 Purplle.com has been an early mover in the online beauty space and earlier secured an undisclosed amount of investment by a consortium of Blume Ventures, Mumbai Angels and The Chennai Angels.
Speaking to YourStory, Manish Taneja, CEO, Purplle.com said, Purplle has clearly demonstrated cost efficient scale up in our beauty products market place business and are making rapid inroads into the beauty services market .With this round of funding, we are confident we will establish ourselves as India’s top destination for beauty.”
Previous calendar year was eventful for the Mumbai based company, “2014 was a great learning experience I would say. We did our fair share of mistakes and thankfully have come out stronger. We have grown by 4 times in our beauty product marketplace business and by 10 times in our salon and spa finder business,” added Manish.
Purplle hit one million users mark in February last year and started accepting online payments for salons and spa services. “Traffic from tier II and III cities increased to 50% and currently mobile contributes to over 70% of traffic on our salon and spa platform,” revealed Manish.
Beauty products and services Market is about USD 8 – 9 billion, out of which at present online contributes less than 1%. Purplle is trying to bring it online. Internationally beauty and wellness has been fertile grounds for the creation of several billion dollar start-ups in recent years – Jumei.com (China), Sephora, Birchbox being a few.
Speaking about his reason behind the investment, Vikram Gupta, Founder and Managing Partner of IvyCap Ventures said “We strongly believe several eCommerce verticals remain relatively untapped in India, and that niche players with rich content and in-built intelligent discovery features are going to be the next wave of value creation, especially in the Indian context. Against this backdrop, beauty and wellness is of particular interest, as it is a fast growth sector with inherent loyalty characteristics far beyond many other verticals”.
The Mumbai based venture plans to achieve $40-50 million GMV run rate this year. “We aspire to have 25000 products, 50,000 salons and spas listed on Purplle platform,” said Manish. As far as competition is concerned the company rubs shoulder with horizontal marketplaces and niche players like Nykaa.
Brainchild of investment-banker-turned entrepreneur Falguni Nayar and her banker husband Sanjay Nayar - Nykaa secured undisclosed amount of funding from private investors, including high networth individuals and non-residential Indians.