Craftsvilla, an online marketplace for handmade, designer and gift items, has raised $1.5 million Series A funding from Lightspeed Venture Partners and Nexus Venture Partners, reports TechCrunch. The company plans to use the funds raised to expand its operations to Indonesia and Thailand.
This funding round follows a seed round from the same investors (Nexus Venture Partners and Lightspeed Venture Partners) in October 2011. Although its worth noting that during the seed round, Kribha Handicrafts, an exclusive supplier to online retail portal had raised money instead of Craftsvilla itself. This was perhaps done to bypass the limitations put on e-commerce companies by India’s multi-brand retail FDI policy by investing in the supplier company, rather than the front end website. We are not quite sure if its the same case this time around, as well.
Started in January 2011, Craftsvilla showcases artisan-produced apparel, metalware, jewelry, home furnishings, food & health, bath & beauty products, gifts, books, and footwear among others. The company claims to have more than 50,000 products from over 1,000 Indian sellers on its portal and is delivering products to over 20 countries worldwide with US and Canada accounting for 25% of the International orders, as indicated by the TechCrunch report. The company also claims to ship over 5,000 products globally every months with revenues growing by 50% month-on-month.
Craftsvilla also claims to deliver products within 7 working days for domestic orders and 21 working days for international orders. While shipping is free for most of domestic shipments, the company charges different shipping charges for different international orders, with shipping being free for International orders of Rs.10,000 and above.
Other Players: Delhi-based Nethaat.com is a similar online marketplace which offers artisan-produced apparel, home & decor, toys, footwear, jewelry, and gifts among others. The company also provides a platform called haating which allows buyers and sellers to negotiate on the price and offers a locker facility to artisans to store their designs and handmade creations and share them privately. Besides this, there are the regular online fashion retailers like Myntra.com, Exclusively.in, Info Edge backed 99labels, Fashion And You, Zovi.com.