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After Trimming Losses Substantially, CashKaro nabs $10 Mn in Series B Round

After almost five years of hiatus, cashback startup CashKaro has raised $10 Mn in a series B round. New investor Korea Investment Partners (KIP) has led the round while existing investor Kalaari Capital also participated in the round. Ratan Tata, who had backed the company in 2015, has not participated in the round.

CashKaro’s parent company Pouring Pounds Ltd has so far not made any ROC filings for series B funding and therefore we’ve not provided the breakdown of the share allotment.

The latest funding has come at a time, when company has claimed that its revenue has increased substantially while it has also managed to pare down its losses by a huge margin. Last year, the company said that its revenue in FY19 grew by 76% to clock 38.6 crores as compared to Rs 22.4 crores in FY18. As for the losses, the company claimed that its losses have come down from 1.6 crores in FY18 to nearly 12 lakhs in FY 19. This is a drop of almost 6x, which is pretty impressive.

If the numbers quoted by the company are indeed true then it is a reflection of the fact that its unit economics has improved drastically. The participation of existing investor Kalaari Capital also partly validates the fact that the company seems to be in a good shape. Conventionally, existing investors don’t pump more capital unless the company shows some improvement in key metrics like market share, GMV, AMU, ARR, unit economics etc.

“Our business has emerged strong amidst the global turmoil caused by COVID-19 and this fundraise is a testament to the potential that Performance Marketing holds in India,” said Swati Bhargava, Co-Founder CashKaro.

Additionally, the Gurugram based company has claimed that its recently launched social commerce app EarnKaro is performing well in the market. The company claims that its new app already has over 1 million registered resellers. However, Techpluto could not verify this fact independently.

Last year, Techpluto had spoken to CashKaro’s co-founder Rohan Bhargava in an exclusive interview. Below are excerpts of this exclusive interview….

Would you like to share the growth predictions or estimates about CashKaro for the next 2-3 years?

CashKaro is already India’s largest Cashback and Coupons site with 3Mn+ registered users, 1,500+ retailer partners and 10,000+ transactions a day. We have witnessed 100% growth over the last financial year and are projecting 200% growth over the next 2-3 years.

Since the cashback and online coupons’ industry is heavily reliant on the e-commerce market, we would like to know your opinion on the current condition of India’s e-commerce industry?

This is a great time, not only for the Indian eCommerce industry but also for all kinds of internet businesses. We are poised to witness an all-time high number of internet users, estimated to touch 829Mn by 2021, leading India’s internet economy to double up to US$ 250Bn over the next 2-3 years alone. Given a vast majority of Indian shoppers, especially those who shop online are driven by best deals and savings options, the times ahead look extremely promising for CashKaro and the Affiliate Marketing industry, as a whole.

Today there is a strong perception that excessive dependence on deep discounting and cashback offers has hindered e-commerce players from finding a sustainable revenue model. Your thoughts on this?

While it may be the case in general that eCommerce players and brands are getting adversely affected due to discounts and cashback, as far as CashKaro is concerned, our model is such that our brand partners do not have to pay the cashback we offer to our users. Since CashKaro cashback paid to the users comes from the commission we receive from our retailer partners for driving sales to them, the sites/brands that work with us do not take a hit on this account. On the contrary, CashKaro helps them acquire more users by driving high intent and deal savvy shoppers to their site.

You’re also running a cashback business in the U.K and therefore we’d like to know your opinion about how nascent or matured is India’s cashback market when compared with developed countries like U.K?

Cashback sites have been around for longer in countries like the UK and users are aware of them. In India, the intent to save is higher but user education is still low. The presence of wallet cashback etc. has familiarized people with the concept of cashback but not everyone is aware that a Cashback site pays real money as cashback. Although we have 3.5 Million Users on CashKaro, we believe this is just the tip of the iceberg and there is immense growth potential in the Indian Market as far as cashback sites are concerned.


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