Bengaluru-based rental and seller of refurbished home appliances and furniture, Guarented, has raised an undisclosed amount in its ongoing Pre-Series A funding round from Mumbai Angels Network. It plans to build their brand and expand into three more Indian cities with the latest funds.
The startup wants to complete their ongoing Pre-Series A funding round within this week as it aims to raise $1 Mn, Guarented cofounder Harshwardhan Raikwar told Inc42.
Launched in 2016 by IIT Kharagpur graduates — Raikwar along with Prateek Agarwal and Abhimanyu Dikshit — the startup had earlier raised undisclosed funding from seed-stage investor K-Start, and angel investor Aneesh Reddy, cofounder of Capillary Technologies.
Guarented targets its rental segment mainly towards millennials who have recently shifted to cities for work or studies, while its target segment for sales are value-conscious customers who are looking to own an appliance or furniture. Currently, the startup rents and resells refurbished furniture and home appliances — sofas, tables, beds, wardrobes, shoe rack, washing machine, fridge, TV and microwaves — both through digital and offline channels.
“The rental and sharing economy is one of the key trends that we are extremely bullish on. We believe Guarented has a strong business model and are dedicated to providing them with the support they need to succeed,” MA Network CEO Nandini Mansinghka said in a statement.
Guarented is currently working with more than 20 vendors in Bengaluru who provide the startups with refurbished furniture and home appliances and has more than 10K customer base renting the products. In terms of sales, the startup is raking about 600 orders on a month-on-month basis, generating revenue of INR 1 Cr ($139.3K) per month, the founder claimed.
It plans on expanding to Hyderabad by March, Pune by July and to Delhi-NCR by October, this year.
Guarented Bets On Growing Furniture Segment
According to a report by the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC), the Indian furniture market is expected to touch $27 Bn by 2022. India was ranked as 14th largest furniture market in the world with a market worth estimated at $18 Bn in 2015.
It would be no exaggeration to say that Indians, especially in major cities, are increasingly adopting the global trend of renting instead of buying. In the segment, Furlenco, Rentomojo and others are already catering to the sharing economy where people can select and rent furniture on monthly, quarterly, or annual rental basis.
Guarented founder maintains that its prices are significantly lower than other players on the fray. The consumers can choose to rent for either 1-2 months, 3-9 months and 10 plus months, and charges refundable security deposits initially.
Raikwar said, “Currently the market is still evolving and companies have their own business models that they aim to master. For instance, for Furlenco, it is their design; and for Rentomojo, it is their financial model. For us, it is the refurbishment capability that is the core of the business.”
When asked about the legal obligation in terms of reselling a branded furniture, the Raikwar said, “Once the product is sold, it’s sold, and whoever has bought the product will be the rightful owner who can rent it or resell it. There are no legal obligations.”