Ecommerce ventures have expanded rapidly, as a result of increasing smartphone and general internet usage. Ecommerce has made shopping headaches a thing of the past for many. Thus, it is no surprise to see diverse corporate entities trying hard to expand in this segment. NDTV is one such entity, and their e-commerce venture Smartcooky recently raised funding from a group of investors led by Google’s Rajan Anandan and ex-Genpact Pramod Bhasin. The amount raised is believed to be about $12 million(Rs. 80 crore).
Currently operating out of NDTV’s existing food site, Smartcooky is a marketplace for health products and personal care items. Such items have become an irreplaceable part of our lives, especially with growing affluence and resultant consumerism. The internet age has also made the average urbanite more aware of healthcare issues, giving a further fillip to the demand in health-related items.
Seema Chandra, NDTV’s food editor, leads this venture. The portal itself will be launched sometime in January. It is likely to use NDTV’s existing readership for its membership base, and will thus experience little difficulty in aggressive marketing. According to Seema, the Smartcooky venture is a natural extension of the detailed coverage which NDTV provides to food and general healthy living.
Media houses expanding their verticals
Others who have allied themselves with this venture after the latest round of funding include Siddharth Pai, son of Manipal Group’s T V Mohandas Pai, and ex-Unilever Manvinder Singh Banga. NDTV had previously forayed into the eCommerce space with IndianRoots in 2013. IndianRoots is a portal dedicated to selling ethnic wear. Also, its gadgets review platform Gadget360 was converted into an ecommerce platform and has recently managed to raise funding from investors. The launch of SmartCooky is likely to catapault other media outlets to expand their verticals into profitable domains.
Watch this space to stay up to date with this exciting venture’s progress.