Kartrocket, an e-commerce platform for SMEs and retailers, has raised $6 million led by Bertelsmann India Investments (BII), with participation from existing investors, Nirvana Digital India Fund, Nirvana Digital Investment, 500 Start-Ups and Singapore-based Beenext. Kartrocket will use the funding for product and seller ecosystem development, hiring and marketing.
In October 2014, Kartrocket raised close to $2 million in a Series A round of investment led by Nirvana Venture Advisors, with participation from Beenos and 500 Startups. In July 2013, it had raised an undisclosed amount of funding in a seed round.
In a press statement, Saahil Goel, CEO & co-founder of KartRocket said, “The current eco-system is not supportive of integrating smaller sellers into e-commerce; in-fact they aim towards replacing them rather than including them. Kraftly has a single vision of allowing every seller to participate in e-commerce.”
In August last year, BigFoot Retail, which owns Kartrocket, launched Kraftly, an online consumer-to-consumer marketplace for handcrafted products. Kraftly enabled any individual, hobby seller or shop owner to create their own branded micro-shop, list products and receive payments. Sellers could also sell directly to their contacts from the app through Whatsapp and collect payments. Kartrocket charged a 5% commission on orders received through Kraftly.
Kraftly would manage payments and logistics for each seller and allow the long tail of small and home sellers to go online. At that time, the platform had 1,500 category leaf nodes and over 600,000 products from 2,000 sellers. Then Goel said by
February 2016 (the company updated us stating that this has been revised to December 2016) the platform would list over 500,000 sellers and 30-40 lakh SKUs. As of now, the portal claims to have 7,500 shops and adds 10,000 listings daily. The marketplace was Android and iOS app-only, but later included the web as well.
The company was established by Saahil Goel, Gautam Kapoor and Vishesh Khurana in July 2012, while Kartrocket was launched publicly in July 2013.
Developments in the ecommerce sector:
– Chinese ecommerce giant Alibaba launched Small and Medium Industries Leveraging Export programme (SMILE), to offer solutions like logistics, certifications, technology and financing. The platform claims it can help support over 10 million small and medium enterprises (SMEs) expand globally.
– In November, Snapdeal launched a multilingual interface on its mobile website, starting with Hindi and Telugu, with plans to add Hindi, Telugu, Gujarati, Tamil, Marathi, Bengali, Kannada, Malayalam, Oriya, Assamese and Punjabi by the 26th of January.
– In October, we reported that the number of sellers on Amazon India has grown 250% year-on-year. Amazon claims that it has been adding 40,000 products per day in 2015 and has 30 million products on it platform.
– In September 2015, Flipkart raised $700 million in a fresh round of funding at a valuation of $15.2 billion.
Our ecommerce coverage here.