After Reliance played a masterstroke for its ecommerce ambitions last month, the company’s interest across booming ecommerce startups has been palpable.
Earlier in the day (March 11), an Entrackr report said that the Mukesh Ambani-led group is in talks to acquire O2O fashion ecommerce platform, Fynd. It was reported that the talks for acquiring 70% stake in Fynd are at an advanced level.
However, in conversation with Inc42 Fynd’s cofounder Harsh Shah said the company do not have any acquisition plans. Though, Shah also mentioned that Reliance and a couple of more investors have shown interest in investing in the company.
Founded in 2012 by Farooq Adam, Harsh Shah, and Sreeraman MG as Shopsense Retail Technology Pvt. Ltd, and pivoted to Fynd in November 2015, the platform functions via an O2O model and directly sources products across various categories – including clothing, footwear, jewellery, and accessories, from prominent brands in the country.
The startup optimises delivery time by sourcing products from the outlets nearest to the customer. It claims to have about 8,000 outlets on board for about 500 clients.
Till date, the company has raised nearly $6 Mn from investors such as Google, Kae Capital, IIFL, GrowX, Anand Chandrasekaran, Rajiv Mehta (CEO of Arvind Sports Lifestyle Limited), and Ramakant Sharma (cofounder of Livspace).
The company makes a big and safe bet for Reliance which announced the plans to launch an ecommerce platform.
According to Mukesh Ambani, the chairman, managing director, and the largest shareholder of Reliance Industries Limited, the company’s ecommerce plan will be beneficial to consumers, retailers and producers and will also help about 3 Cr small shopkeepers across the country. The company is expected to follow a hybrid model. Under this plan, the company is aimed at creating shared profitability by integrating the offline stores of 3 Cr small retailers via Reliance Jio, RIL’s online platform.
Reliance’s ecommerce venture is expected to begin operations in April, this year. The company has acquired four startups in the last two weeks. These include — logistics startup Grab, a vernacular language-as-a-service platform, Reverie Language Technologies; Indian government schemes/services aggregator, EasyGov; and a multiphysics simulation service, SankhyaSutra Labs.