Zovi secures $50M from PayTM and others. Fashion e-tailer Zovi has raised funds from mobile wallet company PayTM and a group of investors. Zovi is owned and operated by Robemall Apparels P Ltd. The app provides a complete range of fashion products for men, women and kids.
Promoters of Zovi have launched a new app called Little, a mobile marketplace for deals by offline merchants that includes restaurants, movies, hotels, salons, gyms, spas and few others. They have formed a new firm called Little Internet P Ltd to cater the demand.
The Little app can be downloaded on Android, iOS, and Windows environment. Promoters claim that they have enrolled 5,000+ merchants from 11 cities across the country. The app can be used as a personalized sales platform; it also provides information about the customers in the vicinity, send notifications and offer relevant deals to them.
Manish Chopra is the co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Zovi. He has graduated from SP Jain Institute of Management and Research in 1992. He started his career as Principal in PricewaterhouseCoopers in 1994, worked in the company till 2001. He worked for a brief stint as Vice President in Intiqua for a year. In 2001, Manish became Director – Product Marketing in Oracle Asia Pacific. After a stint of 2 years, he moved out of Oracle.
In February 2004, Manish became Director – Dynamics APAC in Microsoft and later on headed Strategy and Planning from June 2006. In 2009, he became Chief Operating and Marketing Officer in Microsoft Indonesia. After working in Microsoft for almost 13 years, he founded Zovi.
Satish Mani is the co-founder and Chief Technology Officer of Zovi. He has graduated in Bachelor of Engineering in Mechanical Engineering from Bangalore University in 1990. Satish went on to do his Masters of Science in Mechanical and Aerospace from Old Dominion University in 1993.
He started his career in 1995 as Director – Technology in Focus MRL, worked in the company for 5 years. In 2000, he joined Oracle Corporation as Technical Manager and went on to become Group Manager – Product Development of the company. He left the company in April 2006.
Satish became Vice President – Technology in Visible Path Corporation in May 2006. He worked with the company for 20 months and moved out of the company in December 2007. Satish became Senior Vice President – Technology for Cleartrip.com in January 2008. After a stint of 3.1 years, he joined Manish to found Zovi.
This is first funding raising for Little app from the promoters of Zovi. Apart from PayTM, SAIF Partners and Tiger Global Management along with a group of investors participated in this funding round.
The funds will be used to build merchant network with buyers, hiring and building new technology to focus on the offline market tipped to be $64 billion by 2016. The company has ambitious plans to expand to 50,000 live deals across 11 cities by the end of this fiscal. They are trying to position to the platform as a discovery platform to consumers on one side supported by strong sales channel for offline merchants. At the same time, the company plans to increase staff strength to 1,000, right now they are 400.
Manish Chopra, Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder of Little said, “We believe that the deals space is broken in India with little focus on personalisation, timeliness and ease of redemption. With Little, we aim to change this by offering a real-time, personalised and location-based marketplace which can offer contextual and purposeful deals as it learns one’s usage habits. ”
He further said “For merchants, Little will act as a personalised sales platform that they can use to gain intelligence about customers in the vicinity, ability to send timely notifications and offer relevant deals in a matter of seconds with just a few clicks.”
Vijay Shekhar Sharma, Chief Executive Officer and Founder of PayTM said, “At PayTM, we are committed to build and partner every platform that will bring mobile commerce to masses in India. Little is one the key investments in that direction and will bring millions of hyper-local deals to PayTM consumer’s right from their neighbourhood.”
Little has to compete with Times Group promoted Coupondunia and MySmartPrice.com along with Groupon, world’s leading deals aggregator offer deals from offline merchants to consumers. Some of these startup companies have bagged funding from leading PE institutions. Companies like Shopsity are in talks with investors for fresh funds.