CaratLane opened its 50th store in Mumbai last month and will open more through a combination of owned and franchisee stores. “Our strategy is to open 35 stores by March 2020 through the franchise route and five owned and operated by us. The franchise model of expansion is aimed to yield profit without making an investment,” said Avnish Anand, co-founder, CaratLane.
Started in 2008 by Mithun Sacheti, a jewellery retailer, and Srinivasa Gopalan, an information technology (IT) entrepreneur, CaratLane started as an online jewellery retailer. When Titan bought 62 per cent stake in the company in 2016, the company had 14 physical stores.
Titan bought 62 per cent stake in the company in July 2016. US-based private equity fund Tiger Global too has invested around $44 million in CaratLane since 2011.
The jewellery retail industry in India is passing through a difficult patch not only because of a sharp increase in gold prices but also due to rural farm distress. Jewellery sales have been low this wedding season too.
Titan’s Tanishq brand is targeting mid to high-end customers against Caratlane’s low value ornaments, hence there is no competition between the two jewellery retail chains.
CaratLane is aiming at a 56 per cent jump in its revenue at Rs 500 crore for the financial year 2018-19, from Rs 320 crore in the previous year.