BenefitsPlus, a white labelled Business to Enterprise (B2E) e-commerce provider, has acquired a majority share in daily deals website Koovs.com. Although, the company has not disclosed the amount involved in the transaction, according to VCCircle it is said to be above $2 million. Through the acquisition, the company intends to foray into the B2C e-commerce space. BenefitsPlus Founder & CEO, Paul Shoker informs that BenefitsPLUS will invest $3 million on marketing, technology scaling and on new hires, and aims to become a significant player in the daily deals space.
Koovs’ promoters will continue to have a minority share in the company and its current management team will remain part of the company’s operations. Koovs was founded by Manish Tewari, Rajesh Kamra and Amit Shukla in December 2009. The site offers daily discount deals on apparel, electronics, gadgets, accessories, in addition to spa and restaurant discounts. While online deals are available all over India, deals with local merchants are limited to Bangalore, Delhi NCR and Mumbai. With the investment, Koovs intends to offer deals on a pan-India basis.
This is the company’s second acquisition in the e-commerce space. It had recently acquired another B2E e-commerce company, Snowball eRetail Services, for an undisclosed sum, in an all-cash deal. According to a report, the deal included Snowball’s customer base, technology and 1000 merchant relationships, in addition to its technology engine for profiling end users, to offer customized deals.
BenefitsPlus provides solutions for on-line recognition and rewards programs to corporates, banks and mobile operators including ICICI Bank, SRF, BT, Pizza Hut, Sony Music and Reebok, reaching over 20 million users through them. It offers an internet and mobile enabled platform, catalogue sourcing and management with over 5000 products and services from various brands across 10 categories, payment gateway for redemptions, fulfillment, MIS reporting and customer service solutions.
Although, it appears that BenefitsPlus already has infrastructure in place to offer a B2C e-commerce product, and its experience in the B2E domain as an added advantage, it will be tough to differentiate itself in the already crowded daily deals market.