Zovi, an India-based online men’s fashion retailer, has raised 50 million dollars to build a mobile-only app to list a large number of “hyper-local” deals offered by offline merchants to consumers online.
The fundraising has been led by One97 Communications, which operates Paytm, a mobile wallet and online marketplace, in which Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. has a stake.
Existing investors Tiger Global Management, SAIF Partners and a new unnamed large investor also participated in this funding round, Zovi said, in a press release on Wednesday.
The app, ‘Little’, will list “real-time hyper-local deals to customers across services like restaurants, movies, hotels, salons, gyms and spas,” according to Zovi.
Zovi founders Manish Chopra, a former Microsoft Corp. executive, and Satish Mani, a former senior vice president at travel startup Cleartrip.com, plan to use the funds to build a network that connects merchants with buyers, hire senior executives and build new technology to focus on the Indian “online to offline” market, which is estimated to be worth 64 billion dollars by 2016,reports the ‘IB Times’.
Zovi plans to grow Little to offer more than 50,000 live deals across 11 cities by March 2016, presenting a “discovery platform” to consumers on the one hand and, on the other, a strong sales channel for offline merchants, whose deals will be listed on the app.