Pepperfry raises $8M from Norwest Venture Partners

Mumbai-based online lifestyle store has announced closure of its second round of funding worth $8 million from its existing investor Norwest Venture Partners.

This takes the total capital put into the company so far at about $13 million. Norwest had infused $5 million in the etailer in December 2011.

Talking to VCCircle, Ambareesh Murty, founder and CEO, Pepperfry said the funds raised would be utilised in three main areas – geographical expansion, marketing and to be a one-stop shop for home and living categories.

He said as a market place it wants to reach out to as many merchants as possible. Currently, Pepperfry has fulfillment centres and business development teams at Mumbai, Delhi and Jodhpur. It will now look at expanding to South and East.

Pepperfry would also be launching fulfillment centres and business teams at Bangalore and Kolkata soon.

“The second area where we would ramp up is marketing on all channels. Thirdly, we are shifting our focus towards a one-stop shop for home and living categories so we would add services related to home very soon. If a user is looking for a carpenter or similar stuff, we will add these also to our portfolio,” Murty said.

Launched in January 2012, the e-tailer deals in categories like home, lifestyle, fashion and more. However, recently it has done away with fashion and accessories’ category. “Fashion- apparel and accessories- was only 20 percent of my total business. There are already many players in that segment. And we have built our market in overall lifestyle business so we decided to put all our energy into home and living category,” Murty added.

Earlier this year, while talking to VCCircle, Murty had stated that the e-commerce player has already crossed Rs 100 crore in GMV in January this year. On being asked how he managed to raise another round of funding amid a reportedly gloomy period for e-commerce investment, he said investors are not wary of investing in e-com. “They are just looking for capital efficient businesses. We have always been a capital efficient business. Since we are a marketplace model, our cash burn is also very low and we are a frugal spender as well. The unit economics worked in our favour,” he added.

Earlier, Murty had shared that the site is shipping around 3,000 products a day with average order value of around Rs 2,000. “Home, combining both furniture and furnishings, contributes to 40-45 per cent of the business, while jewellery contributes around 30 per cent,” Murty had said then.

(Edited by Prem Udayabhanu)

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