Zovi founders Manish Chopra and Satish Mani announced today that they have raised $50 Mn to launch their new venture, Little, a diversification into the burgeoning Online to Offline (O2O) market. Little will be ‘app only’ and targets to be India’s largest consumer lifestyle deals marketplace.
The funding is led by Paytm along with a large new undisclosed investor and participation from existing investors SAIF Partners and Tiger Global Management.
Little is building the largest O2O supply side infrastructure and will offer 50,000+ live deals across 11 cities by March 2016. The company is already 400 people strong with strengths in technology, product and operations and expects to build a 1000 person team by March 2016.
The app aims to be both, a discovery platform for lifestyle consumers and a significant sales channel for merchants. It is on the track to provide the largest supply of real-time hyper-local deals to customers across services like, restaurants, movies, hotels, salons, gyms, spas and other services while creating a hassle free, just in time platform for merchants to market their services.
With the close partnership with Paytm, Little will power the deals platform on Paytm and enable seamless payments when a customer bags a deal. Little has seen swift pickup amongst merchants and has already enrolled over 5,000 merchants in 11 cities across India. Little expects to hit a GMV run rate of $170 Mn, by March 2016.
The raised funds will be used to build the “largest” merchant ecosystem in the country, hire senior level talent and build new technology to focus on the Indian O2O market expected to be worth $64 Bn by 2016.
Manish Chopra, CEO & Co-Founder of Little said that the deals space is broken in India with little focus on personalization, timeliness and ease of redemption. “With Little, we aim to change this by offering a real time, personalized and location-based marketplace which can offer contextual and purposeful deals as it learns one’s usage habits. Little’s differentiating strength and power will come from having the largest and deepest merchant base who see Little as their ‘sales partner’ for enabling them to get profits from selling their services.”
“We expect Little to become the de-facto ‘go-to’ mobile app for services hungry smartphone users in urban India, he added.
Manish and Satish will continue to build Zovi as a fashion brand with focus on men’s fashion. Prior to launching Zovi, Manish was with Microsoft as Chief Operating and Marketing officer for Indonesia and CMO, APAC for ERP/CRM. Satish helped build one of India’s most admired travel portals, Cleartrip.com, as SVP, Technology.
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