Bangalore-based VSRD Online Solutions Pvt. Ltd, which runs pre-used home appliances and furniture seller Refabd, has raised Rs 60 lakh ($92,500) in seed funding from Athamus Venture, co-founder Rahul Varma told VCCircle.
Ashok Kinha, managing director at Bangalore-based investment firm Athamus Venture, told VCCircle that the startup will use the funds to expand its team and to grow to four more cities. Refabd currently operates only in Bangalore.
The startup was launched in May last year by software engineer trio Varma, Vineeth Kumar and Durai Gowardhan. The idea for the venture originated when the trio moved to Delhi, in 2014, for one year to prepare for the civil services examination.
The difficulty in getting good-quality second-hand furniture without any hassle became evident to them when they tried to either hire or purchase used home appliances. They realised that short-term residents as well as newcomers to a city face similar problems.
“Most of the things we were trying to buy when we were studying were not satisfactory and most of the time it was very far to go and collect,” said Varma.
The trio decided to look at the prospect of purchasing used household appliances that were not more than four years old, refurbishing and selling the same online with a six-month warranty. That’s how Refabd was born.
Gowardhan and Kumar previously worked at American data management company NetApp. Varma used to work with Anora Semiconductor Labs.
Refabd is not a marketplace. It buys furniture and appliances from people who are moving out of the city and sells it to people in need of it, thereby making a profit on every sale, Varma said. Refabd also offers a seven-day return option and free delivery in Bangalore.
The company claims to have clocked revenue of around Rs 60 lakh in 2016-17.
Refabd will compete with the likes of Bangalore-based GoZefo, run by Zero Effort Technologies Pvt. Ltd. GoZefo, an e-commerce marketplace for second-hand and factory seconds goods, had raised $1.05 million in funding led by Helion Venture Partners in October last year.