Purplle-the Indian eCommerce platform focusing on beauty and grooming recently received a funding of US $5 million. The money raised through Purpelle’s Series A round from IvyCap Ventures will contribute for the growth of the platform’s marketing efforts and fulfillment capacity.
Launched in 2011, Purplle.com has been a pioneer in the online beauty/grooming oriented market. Offering professional salon and spa services, Purple also provides personal care products. Initially, it secured an unrevealed amount of investment by a consortium of Blume Ventures, Mumbai Angels and The Chennai Angels. The CEO of Purplle.com, Manish Taneja, reflected on the scales of cost efficiency experienced by the platform along with highlighting the increasing trends in the Indian beauty services market .
With this new sum of funding, purplle.com expects to establish themselves as India’s top destination for beauty. Mr. Taneja stated “2014 was a great learning experience for us, We did our fair share of mistakes and thankfully have come out stronger. We have grown by 4 times in our beauty product marketplace business and by 10 times in our salon and spa finder business”. Last year in February, Purplle started accepting online payments for their salon and spa services, which earned them around a million hits, causing Traffic from tier II and III cities to increase upto 50% while their mobile contributes currently reached to 70% of their traffic. The market for Beauty products and services accumulates to around USD 8 – 9 billion, out of which, currently online contributes less than 1%. Purplle is trying to change this insignificant percentage by going online.
International beauty and wellness has been given rise to several billion dollar start-ups in recent years – among which Jumei.com (China), Sephora, Birchbox remarkably stand out. Highlighting about his reason behind the investment, The Founder and Managing Partner of IvyCap Ventures, Vikram Gupta stated that “We strongly believe several eCommerce verticals remain relatively untapped in India, and that niche players with rich content and in-built intelligent discovery features are going to be the next wave of value creation, especially in the Indian context. Against this backdrop, beauty and wellness is of particular interest, as it is a fast growth sector with inherent loyalty characteristics far beyond many other verticals”.
Manish Taneja added further that Purpelle plans to achieve $40-50 million GMV run rate this year, With aspirations to enlist around 50,000 spas and salons and 25000 products on Purplle’s collection. From the competitive edge, the platform aims to actively participate in the horizontal marketplaces and niche rivals like Nykaa. Nykaa established entrepreneur Falguni Nayar and her banker husband Sanjay Nayar – has been an active player targeting a niche sector in the Indian beauty/grooming market. It has been backed up by undisclosed amounts of funding from private investors, including high networth individuals as well as non-residential Indian investors.