It is impossible to imagine a woman, especially in a country like India, who doesn’t adore jewellery to enhance her beauty. History of Indian jewellery is as old as the history of the country itself. Around 5000 years ago, the desire to adorn oneself aroused in people, leading to the origin of jewellery. Since then, Indian women and jewellery have gone hand in hand. There cannot be a woman in India, who does not adore herself with minimum jewellery. With time, the taste and preference of women also changed. In the modern days, we can see women more inclined towards the customized jewellery rather than the one available in the stores. Velvetcase has emerged as one of the finest customized jewellery platform in the industry today which satisfies every woman with its unique and integrated designs from innovative designers from around the world.
Velvetcase.com is an online marketplace of curated fine jewellery from designers across the globe for women who adorn jewellery. It is an online platform for jewellery lovers seeking modern, contemporary or classic designs with a personal touch. One can shop from its ready-to-wear designer collection or customize the designs to suit their personal style and preferences. Seeking design excellence and integrity, variety and style, Velvetcase has assembled the best in jewellery designs from innovative designers around the world. Apart from providing jewellery design solutions online, Velvetcase also encourages women to visit its lounge, where the design experts will be happy to assist them in choosing a design from its wide collection of fine jewellery or create their own design.
Started in 2012, Velvetcase’s unique and different ‘consumer back’ approach to the business rather than the traditional ‘product forward’ model, sets it apart from those who follow the latter approach.
Velvetcase aspires to offer maximum choice to its consumers in terms of variety, visual appeal and overall experience with the help of its unique features that includes cutting edge technology and high quality imaging, videos of each product, custom design, its online platform’s multi-lingual and multi-currency features, maximum design variety in terms of gold, diamond, silver, gem stones, uncut diamonds, etc.
Know the founders
The jewellery business is not a new venture to the Co-founder and CEO Kapil Hetamsaria. A passionate go-getter, crazy about customer value is what best describes Kapil. A trained gemologist and with over 15 years of business leadership experience at global companies like Microsoft, McKinsey & Co.; Kapil drives the company’s overall vision.
Runit Shah, Co-founder and COO, has done graduation from the prestigious Purdue University with an Industrial Engineering degree and holds is an MBA from Thunderbird University with specialization in marketing and international business. Runit gained experience at global companies such as General Motors, Raymond James to name a few. At Velvetcase, Runit overseas overall operations, merchandising, finance and distribution.
Funding and expansion
Velvetcase has grown over 300% every year with its unique cost-effective business model which consists of no inventory, rich customer service, higher value product sales. Its unique cost-effective business model has attracted many investors and the company has raised $ 1 million from Chennai Angels and other prominent angels including Anupam Mittal, Founder, Shaadi.com; Jacob Kurien, ex-COO, Tanishq; Jerry Rao and Arihant Patni in the year 2014. Recently, Velvetcase closed its second round of funding of $ 1.5 million with lead investment from Uniqorn Ventures Fund.
Velvetcase wants to establish itself as a brand name while earning a revenue of more than $100 million. Apart from this, it is also concentrating on acquiring thousands of loyal customers while feeling proud to be a part of creating India’s first global luxury brand, specializing in high quality craftsmanship with transparent policies, really making fine jewellery an asset class similar to real estate and the equity markets that people invest in for their future. The only advantage with jewellery is that people can enjoy wearing it while at the same time they can see an appreciation in their assets.
Present market and competition
A report on jewellery e-commerce market says that, “Global jewelry market is growing at a steady pace of 5% CAGR and is expected to reach USD 257 billion by 2017. Asia Pacific has emerged as the largest jewellery market fuelled by surging demand growth in India and China, while USA still continues to be the single biggest jewelry market country. Currently, online jewelry market constitutes 4-5% of the total global jewelry sales but is growing at much faster rate and is expected to capture 10% of the total jewelry sales by 2020. Candace Cheung, senior manager at eBay says online shopping is the emerging trend in luxury goods, with jewelry and watches among the top three items with fastest growth in E-commerce. This is reflected by the fact that jewelry is the No. 2 category by sales for eBay.”
The company claims that it has no direct competition from any firms in Indian market but has a similar company in China that can be best comparable to it, Zbird (www.zbird.com). It also claims that velvetcase.com is the first of its kind in really using technology to offer complete flexibility and customization to a customer as well as making it in a short timeframe with 100% certified quality and 30%-50% cheaper than that of traditional retail.
Seeing the opportunity in the jewellery e-commerce space with no big player in the market, Velvetcase is playing safe with its unique business model. The company observed the recent trends in the market that influence the purchasing decision of the consumers in this sector and is working hard towards attracting more customers. These trends include innovative fusion jewellery to enhance the chances of its wearability, classic and evergreen designs, ethnic Indian jewellery, dominance of big, bold and oversized ornaments and feminine florals etc. Velvetcase considers patience and persistence as its strength as it sees a clear picture of its success based on the same. Apart from this, the company is thankful to its customers, especially the early adopters who showed their trust in Velvetcase and encouraged its venture to flourish further.
A message to budding entrepreneurs
Velvetcase spreads the message of exploring the horizon keeping in mind the ground reality. It advises the budding entrepreneurs not to restrict themselves to a specific industry, sector or business. The founders while sharing their experience say that gaining experience is a great way to build analytical skills, which can be applied to any field that one is passionate about.