These Start-ups are Making a Killing with Second-hand Products Online marketplaces are embracing the old, with a hint of the new

By Sanchita Dash

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The business of used goods in India has seen a rise over the recent years. Gone are the days when second-hand goods would be only available at a chor bazaar in a non-descript part of the town. The switch has happened and how! Online marketplaces are embracing the old with a hint of the new.

Now, a common name in the Indian start-up ecosystem, OLX has even conducted surveys, which reflect that the used market business in India is worth over INR 56,000 crore. This has given a boost to start-ups in the space, who are urging Indians to quit hoarding products they don't use and give millions of others the chance to buy products for a lesser price.

Entrepreneur India takes a look at the various segments in which start-ups dealing with used goods have created a booming business.

Furnishing Homes

OLX has been a major player in this segment with even campaigns like 6-month break-up challenge, where it asked users to sell off things that they hadn't used over for over six months. But now, more and more start-ups are dealing in this segment and their business is even catching the fancy of investors. Zefo, a platform to buy and sell used furniture has raised a series B funding of $9.2 million from Sequoia India. The start-up even promises quality check, wherein they refurbish the used furniture before listing it on their site.

Hand-me-downs Get Cooler

In an Indian family, hand-me-downs from siblings are a common feature. But while this is within family, start-ups in the clothing business have taken it one notch higher by listing used but good clothes on their sites. Many a times we just keep filling our cupboards with clothes that we often don't wear. These businesses are now urging people to bring in more space by letting go of the clothes that they don't wear. From high-end fashion to casual clothing, all sorts of garments are available for consumers to buy. Start-ups like Second to None, Confidential Couture, Revamp My Closet etc. are all rooting for second-hand products in the fashion industry. Another start-up Spoyl has even approached fashion bloggers to hand over the clothes they don't use; the bloggers who have huge following again advertise the same on their social media channels.

Bumping up the Business of Cars

If there is one segment that has been the biggest example for used goods doing brisk business, it has to be the automobile industry. For years now, middle-class families have been opting for second-hand cars in good working condition instead of going for a new car that will burn a hole in their pockets. Naturally, many start-ups operating in this space are giving a much-needed twist.

Larger corporations like Nissan, too, are entering the space with its Nissan Intelligent Choice platform. But start-ups are innovating in this segment rapidly. Cars24, for example, has made way for live auctioning for cars as well. The start-up also promises immediate transfer of documents to the consumer.

Book Bazaar

For a reader, his or her books are always the most precious valuables. But to spread the love for books, readers are opening up to the idea of parting with their books in exchange for a price or better yet, a new book. Sometimes they simply like to donate their books.

Start-ups like and allow one to access their libraries of used books. The advantage that consumers get with this is that it often gives them the chance to find an old book that might not be available otherwise.

Sanchita Dash

Entrepreneur Staff

Former Senior Correspondent, Entrepreneur India

In the business of news for 5 years now. Making my way across India thanks to my career. A media graduate from Symbiosis, Pune, I have earlier worked with Deccan Chronicle (South India's leading English daily), T-Hub (India's largest incubator) and Anthill Ventures (a speed-scaling platform). 

Stories, movies and PJs are my thing. 

If you hear 'The Office' opening score randomly, don't worry it's just my phone ringing. 


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