The novelty and ingenuity of Indian art and craft has been globally recognized. However, the superior artistic products produced by Indian artisans are losing out to the mediocre but well advertised and readily available assembly line products in the market today. Thus, the lack of a proper platform to showcase and sell their wares is limiting these handicrafts from reaching a wider audience.
UnWrapIndia aims to bridge this gap and provide that much-needed platform between rural artisans and urban consumers, essentially bringing India’s best handicrafts from the remotest interiors of our country to your doorstep. Selling crafts home decor and furnishings to accessories and artifacts, UWI is perhaps the first-of-its kind e-commerce site.
UWI was founded in July this year by a team of professionals coming from backgrounds like travel, media, technology, sales, and marketing. The UnWrapIndia.com portal is elegant and aesthetically designed and provides a very professional outlook. “The entire solution has been built from scratch and this allows us to play around with the look and feel as and when we want and incorporate features very quickly”, says Suhas Kamath, COO UnWrapIndia.
One distinguishing factor, other than their merchandise, is that UWI partners with 75 suppliers which include rural artisans from places like Manipur and Assam, or NGOs selling just one product. They have already launched COD to suit the Indian markets, and at the same time looking at foreign shores.
Here is a quick Q&A with Parkal Suhas Kamath, COO, UWI:
PI: What is your target market? Who are your buyers?
PSK: Our target market is anyone who has a second thought about buying foreign products. Currently domestic, very soon we will start international and we have already got ample queries to ship to the US and UK. Currently about 70% of our buyers are women.
PI: What is your delivery model?
PSK: Without compromising on costs, we have gone ahead with the best logistics provider, BlueDart to make sure there are no damages and customers receive the products asap. We also go one step further in training rural artisans on very small things like avoiding usage of certain chemicals in the paints to make the products export compliant.
PI: How did you manage to partner 75 suppliers in four months of founding?
PSK: We have a team scouting for talent both online and offline. Our merchandising head has spent about a fortnight each in the North east and Kashmir. I have personally traveled to Ghaziabad, Haryana, Manali, Chennapatna, Hassan etc. We travel a lot.
PI: How does the supplier login work? Can they directly add items to your shelves?
PSK: The supplier login is a fantastic feature. You can add/modify products at your convenience. You can manage stock, feature products, have a landing page that talks about your company, give discounts as and when you want for selected products and selected time periods. It’s like you have your own website. Soon, they will be able to manage even their in house inventory through our portal.
PI: What has been your traction so far?
PSK: We are growing at 40% month over month. Within four months of launch our alexa rank is about 50k which is great for a new comer in this business.
UnWrapIndia discourages foreign products and promotes Indian alternatives. UWI works on the philosophy that if everyone buys Indian, Indian manufacturers will get the volumes and customers will get the price advantage as well. Be Indian Buy Indian is their motto.
A well-made product, launched with quite some planning, and good execution is what I could attribute the rapid growth of UWI. The business looks promising, but reminds of Brooklyn-based Etsy, that recently received $20 millioninfunds while launching a social commerce platform.
What is your opinion? Do you think UnWrapIndia will carve out a niche among the Flipkarts and Infibeams and Myntras?