Focusing to Strengthen Our Base in The Existing Categories with Latest and Advanced Products
Popat to utilise funding for raising brand awareness and visibility across platforms
It was the parenthood journey of Kinjal Popat and Kunal Popat, co-founder and COO and founder, R for Rabbit, respectively when as first-time parents to-be, they noticed a huge gap for safety and secure baby products. Says the couple, "That is when the idea of R for Rabbit was conceptualised in the year 2014. We never aimed to be a digital first brand and have created a strong presence in both online and offline markets to reach and cater to a wider audience. Through thorough market research, we found the gaps and worked towards solving each parental concern. Today, after eight successful years, we have launched a wide range of products in different categories to help you through your entire parenting journey."
Sharing their challenges of building a D2C in India they say, "Fierce competition and constant evolution and innovation in the products that are pocket-friendly matching the premium standard have kept us on our toes. Also, the wants and needs of consumers have changed and evolved with time as a result of easy accessibility of information. The acceptability of e-commerce buying has boded well for us over the years. However, logistics is something that we are working towards to overcome. Tapping tier 2 and tier 3 cities has been a minor challenge because of the same and we have taken strategic decisions in order to smoothen the process. Also, maintaining a consumer's brand loyalty hasn't been an easy task either given so many products available in the market."
Naturally, they have seen the market evolve. "With changing times, even the buying pattern of consumer has changed and evolved rapidly. Also, technologically, given that the world took a huge hit during the pandemic, us being available on all major marketplaces apart from our own website helped us continue to serve and sell our products without taking a huge hit. Earlier, there was a resistance when it came to the acceptance of high quality and premium branded products in baby segment. Plus, this was a nascent concept for everyone. Now, everyone has started to accept and adapt the high-quality products with unique and innovative functionalities. Hence, we strive to ensure that these are the check points we pass through while conducting our research before the launch of each product, says the parents-turned-entrepreneur couple."
While the pandemic has accelerated their sales, their sourcing, manufacturing and supply chain capabilities have been shaken up badly. They say, "Unfortunately, we have seen a huge disruption in import and export management, leading to high increase in freight charges. Also, with "Make in India' concept gaining wide popularity on a daily basis, we have seen a huge spike in manufacturers and suppliers making high-quality products in India itself. Even we have started to source out the local/national manufacturers and suppliers to support the same."
They reported an ARR of INR 100 crore in the past two years.
On product innovation, the couple says, "With product innovation as one of our central pillars, we have strategically expanded our product portfolio depending on the need of the hour. With constant research, we always focus on understanding the consumer behavior to help us keep up with the market trends and changing buyer persona. Over the years, we have seen a wide awareness and jump towards products like car seat, grooming kit, baby proofing and safety sets etc. which were a lesser-known concept in the nation a few years back. Being present in all these categories and more have helped us succeed when it came to our business goals and has showcased an exponential growth in business over the years."
Speaking of investors' contribution, they say, "R for Rabbit has recently raised a Series A funding which has helped us expand product portfolio and take the required steps for scaling our inventory, working capital and debt repayment. A considerable chunk of the investment has gone towards strengthening both online and offline marketing in order to raise brand awareness and increase our visibility across all platforms."
In the current fiscal, they are looking at, "Focusing to strengthen our base in the existing categories by bringing in the latest and more advanced products along with expanding our product portfolio by entering new categories. With the launch of our care range, we are focused on expanding the same by bringing out a new range."
• Best seller (s): Strollers, Car Seats, and High-rise chairs.
• Total SKUs: 450+
• Team size: 100+
• Repeat customer ratio: 25%
• Online platform resulting in maximum revenue: Amazon
• Turnover for FY 2021-22: Confidential.
• Split between offline and online sales: 60% online and 40% offline.