ONLINE FURNITURE STARTUP PEPPERFRY RAISES $40M IN SERIES F ROUND

ONLINE FURNITURE STARTUP PEPPERFRY RAISES $40M IN SERIES F ROUND

ONLINE FURNITURE STARTUP PEPPERFRY RAISES$40M IN SERIES F ROUND

Therenowned online home and lifestyle store, Pepperfry has raised $40 million inSeries F funding led by Indian adhesives manufacturing company PidiliteIndustries.

TheMumbai-based company had secured Rs 250 crore as part of its Series E fromState Street Global Advisors in March 2018.

InSeptember 2016, the company had got $30 million under the Series E round fromGoldman Sachs and Bertelsmann Investments. Besides, Pepperfry had closed itsSeries D, C, B and A round at $100 million, $15 million, and $5 million,respectively.

ThisUnique online platform was founded in 2011. Two friends, Ambareesh Murty andAshish Shah were the brains behind the brand. It was started as a horizontalonline marketplace focusing on fashion and lifestyle.

Pepperfryis headquartered in Mumbai and has offices, studio stores and warehouse indifferent cities like Delhi, Chandigarh, Kolkata, Ahmadabad, Mumbai, Pune,Hyderabad, Goa, Bengaluru, Kochi, Chennai, Jodhpur, Ghaziabad, and Vadodara.

Inthe date of today, this online platform provides over 1.2 lakh products to selectfrom in multiple categories like furniture, decor, lamps and lighting,furnishings, kitchen, dining, housekeeping, hardware and electrical. Recently,Pepperfry has launched its furniture rental services; it is available in thetop 8 cities in India.

Present-day,Pepperfry is one of the leading online furniture startups in the country. Thecompany has reported annual revenue of Rs 207 crore, a 47% rise in FY19, ascompared to Rs 140.60 in FY18.

Itslosses widened 72 percent in FR19 to Rs 183 crore compared to last year. Thetotal expense of Pepperfry in the financial year was reported as Rs 390 crore,of which 43.7 percent was spent on advertising only.

Pepperfryis owned and operated by Trendsutra Platform Services Private Limited and itcurrently works with about 10,000 sellers, out of which 3,500 sellers get theorder in a month.

Today,Pepperfry claims to be the largest B2C distribution company in India having 120lakh monthly visions on its online platform.

The Journey From A Startup To A Brand

Pepperfryentered as a legend in its category and was introduced with a unique concept.It is the brainchild of former eBay CEO Ambareesh Murty and one of his formercolleagues at eBay, Ashish Shah. In its initial days of launch, the company hada line of departmental store featuring apparel, bags, accessories, furnitureand home decor, Jewellery as well as Perfumes and cosmetics.

Inthe year 2012, Pepperfry was shifted from being a marketplace for lifestyle.Next year, it shifted to the marketplace only for furniture. Today, the companyhas over 5,000 pieces of furniture, in a wide variety. The company is focusedon highlighting the variety of their product. They serve all kinds of peoplefrom first-time house owners to high-end brands.

Inthe last months of 2014, the firm opened its first studio.

Wecannot deny from this fact that the online furniture sector is a crowded marketbut, Pepperfry has always succeeded in keeping a balance between themselves andthe rest of the market in their investment pitches.

Pepperfryhas successfully set up the Last-Mile Delivery in 127 plus towns and citiesdirectly. In February 2017, it achieved the milestone of serving over fourmillion customer orders.

Becauseof its unique business model and excellent service, Pepperfry has been honouredwith many awards and accolades. It received the "2012 Red Herring Asia Top 100"award which honours the most promising private technology ventures from Asia.Another company won was the "Pure-Play e-Retailer of the Year" at the Indiane-Retail Congress 2014 that recognizes outstanding performance and innovationin retail. The Gold award at the Neons for Best Creative under the category of RetailAdvertising for its Outdoor campaign – 'Happy Furniture to You' was one of thevital reorganizations that the company received.

The Visionaries

AmbareeshMurty and Ashish Shah both were ex-eBay executives. Ambareesh spent more thanfive years at eBay, and in the last 3.5 years, he was the CEO. He had a rockingtime there and while his tenure at eBay; Ambareesh saw the potential fore-commerce in India. His thoughts about the opportunity in India were huge andalways had the entrepreneurial streak. So he took the foundation of his owncompany. Currently, Ambareesh serves as the Chief Executive Officer (CEO). Theco-founder is Ashish Shah; he is the Chief Operating Officer (COO) at thecompany.

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