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GiftCardsIndia raises funding from Blume, Rajan Anandan; acquires social gifting venture Giftery

VCCircle_GiftCardsIndia

Mumbai-based GCI Network Pvt Ltd, the company behind the online gifting platform GiftCardsIndia, has raised an undisclosed amount in funding from Blume Ventures and Google India head Rajan Anandan. The funds will be used to expand the team, develop new product and increase the reach, the company said in a statement.

GCI was started by Firoz Khan and Cory York about four years ago. The portal claims to have sold over 250,000 pre-paid cards since launch, through its 20,000 multi channel point-of-sale B2B and B2C network, totalling over $5 million in sales. The firm now targets $16 million in revenue over the next two years.

Prior to starting the gifting venture, Khan and York had worked with Future Group and Shoppers Stop, respectively.

"Rajan Anandan and Blume have been some of the biggest supporters of startups in India. We will continue to press forward and build our footprint in the Indian market for the long run," said York, who also runs PowerStores, a DIY e-com platform which had raised $2 million from a Hong Kong-based investor early this year.

"India is a cash economy, and solving the pre-paid distribution was a challenge. Coming from an e-tail background, we knew manoeuvring the retail landscape would be a major challenge," added Khan.

GiftCardsIndia

Acquires Giftery

The four-year-old startup has also announced the acquisition of social gifting venture Giftery for an undisclosed amount.

Giftery was founded by Janhavi Parikh, an INSEAD (France) alumnus and a serial entrepreneur. She had earlier co-founded Aurality Technologies.

Giftery is a platform to find and send gift vouchers to one's friends for any occasion. The portal has gift vouchers for multiple categories such as dining, interesting experiences, activities and local boutique stores. One can send a gift voucher to his/her friend for a fancy dinner, a scuba diving lesson or a custom-made handbag.

"We have known GCI, its impressive team, and traction for some time. Through the acquisition of Giftery and our ability to further invest into the business, we are happy to partner with GCI. Given the expansion of the rapidly growing organised retail market, we think they are poised to be a leader in gifting, across both offline and online commerce," said Karthik Reddy, managing partner of Blume.

(Edited by Joby Puthuparampil Johnson)

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