LuxeYard India, a venture formed in partnership by US-based LuxeYard Inc (a members-only, flash retail site selling horizontal niche items exclusive home decor, furnishings and fashion items) and serial entrepreneur Sashi Chimala, has entered into an agreement with Regard Venture Solutions for the company's first round of funding. The funds will be used to launch its operations in India.
As part of the revenues strategy, both US as well as Indian merchandise will be leveraged, which basically means that curated luxury living and style products from India will be made available in LuxeYard's global distribution network and similarly the Indian venture will have access to US products.
"Our agreement with REGARD will give us the momentum we need to fill this highly profitable vacuum in India's e-commerce marketplace," said Chimala.
Chimala had earlier told Techcircle.in that he was looking to raise $1 million for LuxeYard India either as seed or angel investment. He had also mentioned that he would then go for the first round of VC funding (of $4-5 million), further explaining that the end game is to exit the business by selling the business to LuxeYard Inc.
LuxeYard India will be launched in late August or early September. Apart from using the brand name of the US partner, it will also share its processes and technology. The Indian avatar will have a dedicated team of 20 of its own for product acquisition, marketing and merchandising operations and managing the site. The portal will showcase apparel, jewellery, leather goods, various beauty peripherals like spa creams and facial creams.
It will target products priced between $15-$300 (Rs 850-1,700) and will follow a third party logistics route to deliver the products to consumers. The firm hopes to have 100,000 members in the first year and 250,000 registered users in the next.
If you happen to visit the company's site as of now, you will notice a 'Coming soon to India!' banner. But users can still request an invitation for becoming a member, following which the site claims they can have exclusive access to sales on designer fashion and home decor at up to 70 per cent discount.
Chimala has previously founded Covansys, Indigo Technologies, Qwiky's Coffee, Knibble, Paypod, BLVD Ventures and runs Well Done Ventures, a US-based company specialising in management consulting and strategy advice to SMEs and startups.
Regard Venture Solutions offers seed-stage human capital to software-based startups. Regard is a US-based incubation cum software development group with focus on mobile apps, social apps, ecommerce solutions, custom application etc. The software development is part another firm Regard Solutions Corporation and Indian arm Regard Solutions Pvt Ltd. Regards Ventures provides mentoring and human capital and pitches itself as a platform for entrepreneurs looking to raise up to $250,000 (Rs 1.4 crore) for a proof of concept software prototype. It focuses on growth-stage technology companies that either need to transform ideas into a working proof of concept or need to evolve a software product for angel or VC investment consideration.
(Edited by Prem Udayabhanu)