14th January 2021: While it may seem like a trivial purchase to many, buying furniture is a special occasion for many adults & families. What was considered a luxury few decades earlier among most households in India quickly became a necessity in most households & with the boom in E-commerce and E-tailing in particular, several furniture startups have come to light.
We will list a few of the popular ones in this post & we will also cover some of the most renowned furniture startups in the country, briefly cover their business models, target markets & their positioning and finally, we will also cover the founding team in small detail.
Without further ado, please find the list here.
- 1. PepperFry [Multibrand, Furniture E-commerce Portal]
Arguably, the Amazon/Flipkart of furniture retail in India, Pepperfry is synonymous with digital furniture sales in the country & adopts a hybrid aggregator based model wherein the firm allows for manufacturers to list on the portal and also sells a hoard of private label products.
The company has been in existence since 2011 & has been generously funded by backers including Goldman Sachs, Norwest Partners & Sequoia capital.
Founding Team: The company was founded by ex-ebay executives. Ashish Shah & Ambareesh Murthy.
HQ Address: The HQ of the company is based in: B Wing, 247Park, LBS Marg, Vikhroli West, Maharashtra 400083, India
- 2. UrbanLadder [Direct to Consumer Retailer]
The closest competitor to Pepperfry, Urbanladder caters to an audience that is slightly less price sensitive but quality conscious as compared to Pepperfry. The average ticket price for every item sold by Pepperfry in 2015 was about 14,000 Rs, the same number was at Rs 20,000 for UrbanLadder, although this number is slightly skewed as Pepperfry also sells several low-ticket furnishing items in order to boost absolute sales volume.
The company was founded in 2012, by IIM grads Ashish Goel & Rajiv Srivastava and the company has consistently raised capital since then, outpacing even Pepperfry in terms of funding. Securing funding from Mr Ratan Tata is probably the biggest feather in UrbanLadder’s cap.
The company is known to regularly make investments in its technological capabilities in order to make the purchase of a heavy product like furniture much more seamless.
HQ Address: The HQ of the company is based in Amarjyothi, Basaveshwara HBCS Layout, Domlur, Bengaluru, Karnataka 560071
- 3. Zefo
Zefo, short for their legal name [Zero Effort Technologies Private Limited] is used appliance and furniture marketplace that sells its service via its mobile app and through its website portal, Gozefo.com. Although the name sounds new, the company has been able to secure close to $9 million dollars in terms of funding. A huge portion of the inventory for selling the products comes mostly from customers itself, about half of the inventory comes from customers who sell their used products which is then marked up and sold to retail customers. The business model is extremely unique for the furniture industry yet Zefo has been able to make great inroads in the furniture industry.
Founded in 2015 by Rohit Ramasubramanian and Karan Gupta, the company has also diversified into appliances & small electronics & M-O-M revenue growth back in 2017 was pegged at around 17%.
HQ Address: Shop No- 201, Bommasandra, near D Mart Bommasandra, RS Gardens, Bengaluru, Karnataka 560099, India
- 4. FurnitureRoots
Founded in 2018, The name FurnitureRoots may seem slightly obscure among the giant players, this is mainly due to the fact that the company’s only customer base is in the B2B segment that consists largely of Hotels, Restaurants, Pub Complex’s, Offices, Cafes and importers of furniture abroad.
Founded by Dhritiman Ranawat, a finance & investment banking professional turned furniture designer and entrepreneur, the company has a large manufacturing facility in Jodhpur & through innovative partnerships in logistics, the company has built a network that can supply to pretty much all of India. The company is currently operated and managed by Dhritiman & his aid, Kevin Joseph
In FY 2019 itself, the company served about 60 hotels, restaurants and furniture stores with about 45% of the revenue being generated through hotel customers & about 40% through restaurants. The remaining revenue portion came via exports of themed furniture to retailers in Australia, United States, Canada, United Kingdom & Netherlands.
FurnitureRoot’s factory and furniture store is located off Jodhpur-Pali Highway, Sangariya, in Basni Baghelao region and all of the company’s finance requirements have been met via bootstrapping, which has benefitted the company in the long run.
HQ Address: The factory & furniture retail store is located in Plot No 58/2, Jodhpur-Pali Highway, Sangariya, Basni-Baghelao in Jodhpur, Rajasthan
- 5. Furlenco
Founded in 2012, Furlenco is at the forefront to ride the trend of a growing interest in rentals fuelled by millennials & a growing trend of temporary inter-state migration for employment opportunities. Ajith Karimpana, the founder of Furlenco & his team researched these trends well and were aware of its implications for the furniture industry and they played their moves right in order to capitalize on it.
The company is headquartered in Bangalore, Sector 6, HSR layout, Near Silk Road. The company takes complete ownership of transport and relocation of furniture for its customers who tend to move from city to city quite often.
HQ Address: Krishna Annex, Sector 6, HSR Layout Bengaluru Karnataka, 560102