If you were wondering how so many people are able to display and offer to sell products on social media platforms like WhatsApp or Facebook, it is quite possible they would have been helped in the venture by Meesho. This Bangalore-based startup offers assistance to individuals and small entrepreneurs develop their virtual market online and the areas they can lend their hand include logistics, sourcing and even the tools to set up a payments mechanism for the sales effected.
Meesho has just raised a fresh round of capital of $11.5 million under Series B funding round led by Sequoia Capital. Existing investors, SAIF Partners, Y Combinator and Venture Highway have also put in their bit in this round. With this, the total capital raised by Meesho stands at $15 million.
The profile of the 800,000-odd social sellers that Meesho has promoted or assisted varies from housewives to students and even small and tiny retail businesses which want to jump on to the online or ecommerce bandwagon. They may end up making around Rs 25,000 a month. And the products sold by these people could also be quite diverse, fashion jewellery, lifestyle products and so on. They come from distant towns and cities as well, apart from the metropolises. It is estimated that the social platforms have enabled Meesho to reach these products to over 4 million buying public in India even if most of them make just one-off purchases.
The funds now inducted into the startup will go towards increasing manpower up from the present count of 130 and product development.
The founders believe that they had succeeded in helping thousands of simple people achieve what they wanted to do without practically making investment in taking their product or service to millions online and now with this Series B funding they have set a target of 20 million small businesses being promoted online in the ensuing 2 years. They and their investors are betting big on social commerce or social selling where a lot of people know and trust the others on the same platform and Meesho acts as the catalyst to work on this relationship and convert into a business.