E-retail platform secures $3.4 million investment as India’s online shopping takes off

By Lucy Whitehouse contact

- Last updated on GMT

E-retail platform secures $3.4 million investment as India’s online shopping takes off

Related tags: Online shopping

Indian beauty company Nykaa has secured Rs 20 crore ($3.4 million) from private investors to further boost their presence as one of the country’s leading online retailers. 

The company, which was founded in 2012, has stated that the investment will be put towards enhancing its marketing drives, and developing further its technology and the management of its stock.

The retailer offers products from over 300 brands, including Ponds, Dove, Gillette, Johnson & Johnson, and L’Oréal, and its move to strengthen its position within the e-retail space across multiple platforms responds to the ongoing rapid rise of internet shopping in the country.

Our aim through 2014-15 will be to make Nykaa.com the number one e-retailer for multi-brand cosmetics,”​Falguni Nayar, CEO of Nykaa, told E27.co.

Multichannel India

Since its launch two years ago, Nykaa has risen to prominence, now boasting 10,000 SKUs and owing its growth to the popularity of e-retail in India, a country which Ernst and Young recently described as “at the cusp of a digital revolution​”.

The size of India's e-commerce market in 2013 was around $13 billion, according to a joint report of KPMG and Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI), and the emerging market is gearing up for an approaching explosion of online sales.

Indeed, e-commerce in India is expected to reach around $50-70 billion by 2020, according to the chief executive of the country’s largest e-commerce firm, Flipkart: it is perhaps then no surprise that investors are displaying a healthy appetite for digital retail platforms in the country.

Mobiles: the way forward?

This rise is due in large part to the quickly spiking uptake of mobiles in the country: according to a new PwC survey, 69% of respondents in India said they shop online via mobile platforms, with this number set to rise considerably, driven largely by rural consumers.

Unilever is a brand mobilising to tackle this trend, having recently launched a music streaming service for mobile shoppers of its Lifebuoy soap and Fair & Lovely skin creams.

The multinational is angling to reach a further 350 million villagers in India by streaming Bollywood music interspersed with adverts to their phones, in a move which confirms the mobile platform is under focus for the major brands.

Nykaa, bucking the digital bandwagon somewhat, is also intending to begin opening offline retail units too, as cross-channel retail becomes the new norm.

Related topics: Business & Financial, South Asia

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