Leveraging their training in logistics and supply chain management at Boston Consulting Group and their personal experiences with family businesses, Rahul Aggarwal and Hariher Balasubramanian started BuyEazzy.
Founded in 2021,is an e-commerce platform that focuses on beauty and personal care products. The Mysuru-based startup aims to be the shopping destination for Tier II cities and beyond.
BuyEazzy has been growing at a 100% monthly rate for the last six months and is currently completing over 2,000 orders per day. The startup is operational in eight Karnataka cities: Mysuru, Hubli, Dharwad, Mangaluru, Belagavi, Coorg, Hassan and Tumkur.
It claims to have onboarded more than 75,000 first-time online shoppers while working with more than 1,000 neighborhood stores. Around 50% of BuyEazzy’s orders come from remote towns and villages tagged with these cities.
During his previous role as project leader at Boston Consulting Group (BCG), Rahul worked in sectors in remote areas such as Dhanbad, Jaunpur, Angul and Sultanpur.
During a project at BCG, Rahul met Hariher, an engineer and MBA graduate. The two were supposed to travel to London for the project when the pandemic hit. And this changed the course of their professional lives.
“I am a fourth generation entrepreneur in my family. I own small clothing and sweet shops in Delhi. Business is something that comes very naturally to me. Hariher has a very deep understanding of the South Indian retail market,” says Rahul.
“We always wanted to build a consumer-facing business, but leveraging our understanding and experience of the supply chain (at BCG). The market we are looking at and the white space we are targeting, which is Bharat, is tough,” he adds.
As the co-founders are based in Delhi and Chennai, the question arises why choose Mysuru to set up a business.
“We wanted to occupy a city that was a true representation of the middle class, which is our target user base. We also had to think longer term, where we think about the availability of tech talent. Mysuru provides that kind of strategic advantage when it’s three hours from Bangalore. At the same time, it provides access to all southern states with an overnight delivery mechanism,” says Rahul. Your history.
How does it work
Instead of digital marketing, BuyEazzy has a unique customer acquisition model where it leverages the relationships small business owners have with their customers to convert them into BuyEazzy users.
For example, the e-commerce platform is associated with a salon that sees between 12 and 15 clients per day. The salon promotes the application and receives a commission for registrations. BuyEazzy has many such associations at Kirana stores and salons in these Tier II cities.
“We take advantage of the trust that already exists between these small businesses and the end users who are coming to the store, who have already been using a service, or have been buying from these people. These businesses have a unique proposition to say that ‘I have started an online business in collaboration with this company’. Here, the owner of this business is at the forefront, but the customer is also familiar with the BuyEazzy brand,” explains Rahul.
“These people can earn up to 50% of their current income without affecting their business,” he adds.
The startup has its own last-mile delivery fleet and handles sourcing and logistics.
Being a marketplace for beauty and personal care products, BuyEazzy has implemented strict quality control measures. It also says it works with a handful of vendors and works directly with brands.
By working with local vendors and distributors, the startup claims it can deliver orders within 24 to 48 hours. About 80% of the startup’s supply chain is localized.
“Other startups with a centralized supply chain can’t do that,” says Rahul.
Brands in Mysuru
Tier II cities and beyond have unique consumption patterns and brand preferences, says Rahul Your history.
“Regional specific beauty and personal care brands don’t have that kind of market share in Mysuru, but there are some regional Ayurveda brands that we work with,” says Rahul.
“D2C brands still have great penetration in these cities and towns because they have focused on the metro and Tier I through digital marketing. When we become the go-to market in these cities, we also become the go-to market channel for these D2C brands,” he adds.
Tier III and IV cities are availability-driven markets and less of an awareness-driven market, he concludes.
The marketplace plans to expand to 20 cities and add more than a million offline users to e-commerce within a year. Some of these cities include Coimbatore, Davangere, Shivamoga, Tirupur, Salem and Trichy.
In August 2022, BuyEazzy raised $1.3 million in a seed round led by Incubate Fund India and M Venture Partners, along with participation from angels like Superb Capital and others.
He plans to use these funds for product improvement, team building, and expansion.
Other Tier II and Tier III city-based e-commerce startups include Kurseong-based Daammee, Bhubaneswar-based Maavni Designs, Jaipur-based MEDdelivery, Patna-based Flyseas and Pune-based Maneraa.
India’s e-commerce industry has been on an upward growth trajectory and is expected to overtake the US to become the second largest e-commerce market in the world by 2034. The e-commerce market is expected to reach $200 billion by 2026 from $38.5 billion in 2017, according to an IBEF report.
With the cost of serving Tier II and other smaller cities falling, most of the country’s e-retail growth will come from these regions. Overall, online shoppers in India are expected to reach 220 million by 2025.