Bangalore-based Jiffstore Receives Funding from Unitus Seed Fund.
Bangalore-based Jiffstore Software Labs Pvt Ltd, which offers mobile commerce and customer engagement solutions to grocery retailers, has recently managed to gain an undisclosed amount of funding from seed-stage impact investment firm Unitus Seed Fund. Jiffstore will be using this recent round of funding to further develop their technology platform to expand ts customer base of small shops.
“Retail in India is expected set to reach $750 billion by 2015. Ninety two per cent of the retail market is unorganized, mostly in small shops. We see a fantastic opportunity for a cost-effective m-commerce solution to automate these shops, help them compete and delight their customers,” said Shameel Abdulla, CEO of Jiffstore.
Jiffstore was founded during the previous year of June by four software engineers, abdulla, Aswin Ram, Satish Basavaraj and Sandeep Sreenath. The startup was originally incubated by Kochi-based Startup Village, before being picked up by Times Internet’s TLabs for the its latest batch.
The Jiffstore platform helps Kirana stores and supermarkets to go online without needing to invest much in technology. The firm also offers an application to end consumers, who place place their orders from their neighborhood stores, with only three simple steps, and receive their items through delivery at the doorsteps. A pay-as-you-go platform, Jiffstore claims that it seeing over 30 percent month-over-month order growth rate and is looking to bring on many new stores in the coming months.
During an interview with Techcircle.in in the past December, Jiffstore claimed that it had manage to partner with over 23 stores in Bangalore alone.
“Building a business to serve lakhs of kirana shops is no small task due to the requirement of maintaining an extremely low cost structure while scaling on-the-ground operations quickly,” said Srikrishna Ramamoorthy, partner, Unitus Seed Fund. “The diverse experiences of the Jiffstore founding team and their proven ability to get customer traction quickly were key factors in our decision to make this investment.”
Based on growing consumer demand fueled by ever-decreasing smartphone costs, India’s organized retail sector has been rapidly adopting e-commerce and m-commerce, while small shops have been left behind due to their lack of knowledge, limited resources and operational complexity. There have been and estimated 15 million kirana stores and small shops that could benefit from m-commerce solution within India.
Unitus Seed Fund, part of the Unitus Group, is a financial services group operating in multiple emerging markets since the year 2000. The funds essentially invest in BoP startup that serve large-low-income populations.
This is Unitus Seed Fund’s fifth deal and second m-commerce related investments in India since January this year, following investments into mGaadi (m-commerce solution for ordering auto rickshaws).
It’s also back by ventures like Medpal, dental chain Smile Merchant, Laundry Project early this year.