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Flipkart to enter home furnishing, furniture segments

10 March 2015

Online marketplace Flipkart is all set to enter the vast home furnishing market that includes products from cushion covers and furniture to kitchen appliances, even as rival Snapdeal has entered the reality segment with tie-ups with realty majors.

The Bengaluru-based online retailer has launched a home furnishing segment that includes products from cushion covers to kitchen appliances. It is planning to add furniture into the segment in a couple of months.

Home and furnishings is one of the fastest growing categories online and Flipkart expects about 10-15 per cent of the total sales coming from this segment by end of the year, according to Ankit Nagori, senior vice president (marketplace) of Flipkart.

The market for home furnishings and furniture, estimated to be worth over Rs1,25,000 crore ($20 billion), offers great scope for the fast-growing online retailers.

''We entered this segment at a right time as the market is expanding rapidly. We are already working with few thousand sellers, with expertise in home-related products, across towns and cities like Jaipur, Lucknow, Ludhiana, Chandigarh, Jodhpur, and Indore among others. The idea is to build a category based on right selection and focusing on the local market. We are on the right track,'' Nagori said, adding that there are about 2-3 crore small and medium enterprises in the country that cater to this particular category.

Flipkart expects the sellers in this category to grow 3-4 times in the first year itself. According to industry experts, home and furnishing segment is getting competitive online with niche players like Rocket Internet-backed FabFurnish, Norwest Venture Partners-funded Pepperfry and Kalaari's Urban Ladder.

The segment has attracted business tycoons such as Ratan Tata, while players such as Snapdeal, Homeshop18 and are all betting big on it as it offers margins of 10-25 per cent.

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