After months of speculation, Flipkart has confirmed that it has bought the Bangalore-based online fashion store Myntra. Myntra founder Mukesh Bansal will join Flipkart board. Both entities will remain independent.
Follow our liveblog on the announcement here.Here is a quick look at the important events in Myntra’s journey until now:
May 2007: Myntra started off as an on-demand online personalization platform for consumer products, which allows users to find and create personalized and creative merchandise like T-Shirts, Mugs, Calendars, Keychains, Diaries and other items. The company was started by Mukesh Bansal, Ashutosh Lawania, Raveen Sastry and Vineet Saxena who pooled in Rs. 50 lakh as seed money for the venture.
October 2007: Myntra had raised undisclosed amount of seed investment from Erasmic Venture Fund (Accel India Venture Fund II) and Mumbai Angels.
November 2008: Myntra raised $5 million from NEA-IndoUS Ventures, IDG Ventures and Accel India Venture Fund II. The company reported revenues of Rs 4-5 crores. It also claimed to have a client base of over 150 companies and over 50 colleges.
June 2010: Myntra launched an online brand store solution for corporates called Brand Stores. It claimed to have deployed this solution for several corporate houses including Tech Mahindra, Cable & Wireless Worldwide, and EMC among others.
March 2011: Myntra raised $14 million from Tiger Global and existing IDG Ventures and Indo-US Venture Partners (now Kalaari Capital). Following this investment, Myntra pivoted from being a personalized consumer products player to reposition itself as an online store for fashion and lifestyle products. Two of Myntra co-founders Raveen Sastry and Vineet Saxena also quit the company.
May 2011: Myntra claims to have products from 30 brands like Puma and Nike India among others (via Business Today)
February 2012: Myntra raised $21 million from Tiger Global and others. The company claims to have an user base of 2 million customers. It also claimed to be generating close to 80,000 to 90,000, with half of the orders being placed by new and the other half by repeat customers. The average cart size in terms of value was Rs 1400.
June 2012: Myntra claimed to have a customer base of 3 million and 400,000 visitors on a daily basis. It also claimed to have 21,000 unique products across more than 350 brands and delivered products in 10,000 pin codes across more than 1,200 towns in the country.
Late 2012: Myntra raised around $25 million investment from existing investors Tiger Global and Accel Partners among others. The company also launched its first private label.
November 2012: Myntra acquired private label Sher Singh and its parent company Exclusively.in. Post acquisition, Sher Singh products were integrated to Myntra and the team joined Myntra to strength its private label portfolio. Interestingly, it’s worth noting that both the companies had common investors in Tiger Global Management & Accel Partners India.
November 2012: Myntra pilots Try & Buy, allowing consumers to place an order for a product, try it out in their homes and then decide about buying it or not. (via The Economic Times). Interestingly, Flipkart is also currently piloting Try & Buy for select fashion categories like Women’s Jeans, Men’s Jeans, trousers and casual shirts in select locations in Bangalore.
April 2013: Myntra acquired a San Francisco based virtual fitting room startup Fitiquette for an undisclosed amount. Post acquisition, Fitiquette CEO Andy Pandharikar was appointed as the head of Myntra’s newly formed Innovation Labs in San Francisco and Fitiquette’s core product was expected to be integrated within Myntra website.
May 2013: Myntra introduced a product exchange facility on its site, allowing consumers to exchange an existing product for a different size, without having to first return and then re-order the product.
August 2013: Myntra piloted a one hour delivery system for some e-commerce purchases in Delhi and Bangalore.
September 2013: Myntra claims to be generating gross merchandise value (GMV) of Rs 60 crore on a monthly basis. It also claims to be doing around 12,000-13,000 transactions on a daily basis and the order return rate was at 12%, half of which was CoD returns. Private labels accounts for around 15% of Myntra’s total revenues. (via TechCircle)
November 2013: Myntra signed an exclusive partnership with UK-based apparel manufacturer Raised on Denim to sell the latter’s products on its site.
January 2014: Myntra CEO Mukesh Bansal claimed that 20% of its sales comes from mobile phones. Around 66% of its transactions happened over Cash on Delivery. Myntra also partnered Google India to host a Google+ Shoppable Hangout. This shoppable hangout allowed consumers to watch the chat between designers or retailers and simultaneously browse a curated list of products for online purchase.
January 2014: Flipkart had reportedly approached Myntra for a merger deal, while the company was in talks to raise $50 million investment from Azim Premji’s Premji Invest and others. (via The Times Of India).
February 2014: Myntra opted for the $50 million investment from Azim Premji’s Premji Invest along with new and existing investors. Of this, PremjiInvest had put in Rs 155.9 crore, Sofina had put in Rs 99.76 crore, Tiger Global had invested around Rs 31.17 crore while IDG and Accel Partners had invested Rs 9.35 crore each.
Bansal claims that private labels now account for 18% of Myntra’s total revenues and hopes that it will increase to 35-40% in the next two-three years. Myntra currently has seven private labels - Roadster, Dressberry, Mast & Harbour, Anouk, SherSingh, Kook n Keech and ETC. Besides this, there is Hrithik Roshan’s casual wear brand HRX which is manufactured and sold exclusively on Myntra. The company also plans to launch a kids wear private label by July 2014.
The company also claims to offer 50,000 products from more than 700 brands. It is processing about 15,000 orders and shipping 30,000 products on a daily basis. Bansal mentioned that they are doing about Rs 100 crore in monthly revenues. The cost per acquisition declined to Rs 300 from Rs 1,000 about 18 months back. Bansal claimed this was because of a strong brand presence due to which the company is now receiving direct traffic or organic search traffic (via Business Today)
March 2014: Flipkart-Myntra merger talks picks up again with common investors Accel Partners and Tiger Global reportedly pushing for the deal (via TechCircle).
March 2014: Myntra integrated a marketplace to its site to offer products from boutiques and localized brands. At launch, it was available in four cities including Delhi-NCR, Bangalore, Mumbai and Surat and has signed up around 100 sellers from these four cities. It was looking to sign up more than 1,000 retailers over the next 10-12 months. (via TechCircle)
April 2014: Subrata Mitra, a partner at Accel Partners told that the merger discussions had stalled over disagreement on the status of Myntra following the acquisition. Myntra CEO Mukesh Bansal was apparently looking for a guarantee of operational independence from Flipkart along with a cash infusion of around $150 million while everyone else wanted the companies to pool in resources to put up a fight against its competitors Amazon India and eBay-backed Snapdeal. (via The Wall Street Journal)
Later in the month, Myntra tied up with fashion designer Anita Dongre to exclusively retailer her Iinterpret Spring Summer 2014 collection on the site. It also launched the 2014 collection of ‘BIBA by Rohit Bal’ and ‘Indian by Manish Arora’, which will be exclusively available on the site. The company also informed that it had introduced two International brands namely Desigual and 883 Police on the site and was looking to add more than 50 International brands to its portfolio in the future.
May 2014: Enforcement Directorate (ED) is reportedly looking into Myntra for possible violation of foreign direct investment (FDI) norms under Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA). Myntra spokesperson however told that the company complies with all government regulations and it will co-operate with all government agencies.
May 2014: Flipkart buys out Myntra.