India’s third largest e-tailer Snapdeal will invest $100 million over the next one year to uplift its online fashion portfolio in the wake of surging competition from its peers. The Indian e-commerce major will not only be focusing on selling branded products but will also build its own capabilities along with the range of affordable and high-quality fashion products.”In the next few months, we’ll be making some big moves in fashion. We’ll not limit ourselves to selling other people’s products only ,” Snapdeal co-founder and CEO Kunal Bahl said at the foundation day programme of the IIM-Calcutta.
According to Bahl, there is a huge mismatch in the offline and online sales of apparels in India. He said non-branded products comprise 90% of the offline sales while in the online space, 90% of the apparel sales are branded. “We have to figure out this huge mismatch. Investments will be across technology , logistics, partnership with brands and marketing. There will be some key partners in the fashion industry too,” he added on the sidelines of the IIM-C event.However, on unveiling an exclusive fashion or apparel brand in this initiative, Bahl said, “Right now, I cannot share anything on that.”
Expecting a significant rise in the number of people making online purchases, he said, “Snapdeal is investing significantly in logistics and payment modes as these are perceived to be the success mantra for ecommerce companies down the line. Currently , 60-70 million people in India are estimated to opt for online sales.”
On the right online model for fashion business, the Snapdeal CEO asserted, “I am not the judge of right or wrong model. I feel it (current business model) is not sufficient. See, the purpose of doing fashion is to make money . And If you are selling brands at a loss, why sell them in the first place?” Amid falling sales on account of the government’s drive on demonetisation, the company is focusing on popularising the recently acquired e-wallet, Freecharge.