Seed investor, MyFirstCheque has invested in Pre Cared, a service which re-sells pre-used baby products (read our earlier coverage: Precared Enables Buying /Selling Of Used Baby Products).
PreCared has been conceptualized to re-use baby products and thus offer an economical and green option to parents. The company buys used products from parents and post them on the website for sale after cleaning and sanitizing the products. The website also offers the option of classifieds and also provides a Used-Condition rating for all the products.
As far as the target segment is concerned, the Mumbai based startup is targeting the aspiring Middle class and affluents. The categories of products offered range from Walkers to Car Seats, Prams, Toys, Cradles and Cribs etc and offers anywhere between 15-35% of the current retail price of the products depending on the product and its conditions to the sellers.
Urban lifestyle, single kid and growing consciousness about product recycling has worked in favor of the concept of reusing baby products. Baby products are kept in excellent condition by their user and looked after with a lot of love and care. However the segment is unique as post the 1-3 year time frame the baby outgrows the product and it can’t be put to any other use and that makes it a perfect segment for recycling.
Pre Cared also has informal alliances with NGOs wherein if the parent doesn’t want to accept money for the product that he or she is selling to Pre Cared, then the money is donated on their behalf to the NGO by Pre Cared.
The company will use the funding to set up 2 more warehouses in the South and North of India for sourcing products.
This is the fourth investment of MyFirstCheque and the first in the current year, with earlier ones being in Mericar, apply2many and OfferGrid.
QnA with Precared founder, Tabrez Khan (from our earlier coverage):
Pi: How do you plan to monetize the service? Generally, the segment that is interested in buying second-hand products (in this case) isn’t online – so how do you plan to distribute?
[Precared, Tabrez]This is not a not-for-Profit venture, We make money in the difference of selling and buying cost.Space is at a premium so most parents don’t negotiate on price, they are happy that they get paid for getting space in their house.So the difference in our buying and selling price is worth doing this business. The alliance with NGO’s is to be able to contribute. You have pointed out to my biggest challenge by asking me about my ‘Target Segment’.
Agreed that as of now ‘Used Baby Products’ is perceived by many to be a cheap option and is only for people who cannot afford them. But I am convinced that it would not be confined to that specific strata,In fact I have sold to some affluent families. The biggest concern with them is Hygiene and Trust, and we are addressing both the issues(treatment and 100% refunds).
Also many young mothers are feeling positively towards the Recycling and Contributing to society concepts. Apart from these, consider that a single kid is given a pram,a cot,a rocker,a walker,a car seat,a high chair,a playpen, and some expensive toys; then the potential savings would be anywhere between 20k to 50k and that is substantial.In fact we may encourage parents to aspire and try more different products than be restricted by budgets. Our products too are in good condition as most products are used very seldom and gently.We Indians are highly value conscious, and if provided with the comfort and style of say a 10k brand in 5k – 6k price, then we would certainly give it a try.
As for people who don’t shop online, can visit our warehouse and shop physically.We would also plan more outlets wherein we would keep very few products but provide customer with more choices online at that outlet thus addressing their concerns at less overheads for us.
Pi: How do you take care of hygiene?
[Precared, Tabrez] The Hygiene is taken care of on the guidelines of baby care centers(western countries). We give treatments with detergents, warm water, and Chlorine solution(where recommended). We also dismantle the product entirely and treat manually so that the treatment is complete.