E-commerce player Club Factory has raised $100 million in a Series D round of financing led by leading venture capital firm Qiming Venture Partners. Other investors included Bertelsmann, IDG Capital, and other Fortune 500 companies from USA and Asia, it said in a statement.
Club Factory doesn’t charge commission from sellers on its e-commerce marketplace; this has helped it emerge as the third largest e-commerce player in India, after Amazon and Flipkart, it claimed citing app download and usage data from App Annie. It claims its Indian SME business has grown ten times in the last six months.
Talking on the announcement, Club Factory Founder and CEO Vincent said, “Club Factory offers local sellers 0% commission marketplace platform, and any legally qualified Indian seller can sell on Club Factory. At the same time, we have also pioneered to strengthen the “store-within-platform” concept in India's e-commerce industry, allowing direct contact between buyers and sellers through our application.’’
‘‘We have changed the status of the Indian e-commerce industry that monopolised information of buyers and sellers, allowing SMEs to own their customers and run their business better. All this, combined with our strategy to reduce the transaction costs of buyers and sellers and allow more local players to enter the ecosystem, has worked very well for us in India,” Vincent said.
“India has the world’s second-largest population with the purchasing power parity (PPP) ranking third worldwide. A huge market like this undoubtedly has diversified market demand, but many players pursue a narrow range of products through a closed ecosystem. Indian customers also need another kind of e-commerce platform – a more open one – which provides more options to customers and more vitality to the e-commerce field. This is why Club Factory has been able to rapidly grow in India”, Vincent added.
Club Factory aims to further enhance its Open Platform Strategy post this new round of funding by expanding its range of products to deliver more offerings in different categories. The platform also looks to attract more local sellers and enhance its data technology capability to make Indian retail more efficient.