The multiple investments in the ecommerce sector are testimony to the famous saying, “Actions speak louder than words.” One after the other, etailers are grabbing the eyeballs of investors to secure funds, thus helping them to grow and ride the success of the ecommerce wave.
The latest to join the list is FirstCry, etailer selling baby care products. Reflecting potential, it has secured $26 million (Rs 156 crore) funding from a group of investors led by Valiant Capital Partners, San Francisco based hedge fund. Also part of the round were existing investors IDG Ventures, Ventex Venture Holdings and SAIF Partners.
The baby care segment is a promising product category in the online retail sector currently. It accounts for roughly 5% of the $10 billion baby care product segment in India.
How will the funds be utilized?
“The funds raised will be used to scale across channels, online, mobile and offline, and invest in growing the private label business,” FirstCry co-founder and CEO Supam Maheshwari said.
FirstCry also has a network of offline franchise stores, about 100 in 85 cities, to support its online presence. “We decided to adopt an omni-channel strategy from the beginning to better address the complex dynamics of the baby care products market,” said Maheshwari.
Using the funds, the number of offline stores will be increased to around 400 over the coming three years. “The franchisee stores have helped build customer loyalty. Repeat business is now 75%, the highest we’ve seen in our e-commerce portfolio,” said Manik Arora, founder and managing director of IDG Ventures India.