Online furniture marketplace MebelKart.com is raising $20 million from local search platform Askme.com, in exchange for a majority stake in the company, which would be in excess of about 75%. The rest of the stakes would be held by the promoters.
For now, MebelKart will operate as a separate legal entity but maybe in some time it will merge into Askme’s transaction platform. In May 2015, Askme had acquired grocery marketplace BestAtLowest.com for about $10 million.
“In two months of acquiring the online grocery player Bestatlowest.com, we scaled them to become a Delhi/NCR player. And within the next four quarters we intend to scale them up to pan-India operations.This is how we plan to scale up MebelKart as well,” said Manav Sethi, Group CMO Askme & head of digital strategy.
The Bengaluru-based startup was founded by Rahul Agarwal (IITK), Nikhil Saraf (BITS Pilani) and Ranjeet Vimal (IITB) in 2012, MebelKart currently sells more than 100,000 furniture products across India from more than 1,000 sellers across the country. It consists of 30 members in its current team and recently raised a angel round of funding.
The other players operating in this space include UrbanLadder, FabFurnish, HomeLane, Pepperfry, and CustomFurnish among others. As per Sethi, this strategic investment will help both Askme and MebelKart to acquire a significant share in this profitable and rapidly growing category which is yet very fragmented and unorganized.