Meesho: India’s Fastest-Growing Reselling Platform

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Meesho, a Bangalore-based social e-commerce startup, has now become India’s fastest-growing reselling platform, valued at $5 billion as of March 2022. The preeminent reason behind its success is that it lets you start your business with zero investment. Here’s the story of its journey to success.

meesho, a social e-commerce startup
Image Source: Growthonomy.in

Growing businesses through e-commerce have become increasingly popular in recent years. Moreover, since the COVID-19 pandemic, more people are making their purchases online. 

“Farmiso” was launched by “Meesho” in March 2020, a similar online grocery business to its other verticals, fashion and beauty. Its platform connects small businesses with resellers, mostly homemakers seeking additional income, who then find customers within their social networks.

How did it start?

Two IIT Delhi graduates, Vidit Aatrey and Sanjeev Barnwal, founded “Meesho” in December 2015. In 2016, Y Combinator also chose “Meesho” as one of the 3 Indian companies for investment.

Small businesses and individuals start their online stores using social media channels such as Facebook, WhatsApp, Instagram, etc. In 2019, Facebook invested in Meesho, making it the first Indian startup to receive investment from an American company. The company targeted housewives and students as their primary sellers.

Meesho business strategy

It runs a business-to-consumer marketing model and uses a cost leadership strategy for its business. They target customers who look for quality products with competitive pricing. About 70% of its customers are from 2-tier or 3-tier cities across India.

The app also shows a listing of products with suppliers and sellers, which are then pushed by resellers, allowing the sales to go higher. 

As a Meesho reseller, an individual can find buyers for the sellers, while charging a good commission. 

Among the most common resellers are housewives, students, and fashion bloggers/influencers who use their social media networks to reach potential customers.

Meesho Revenue and Investors

Meesho’s major sources of revenue are charges from the sellers and vendors.

It runs a commission-based business just like Flipkart and Amazon. However, resellers do not require to pay any commission, which makes it a great bargain for eager earners. 

Other sources also include – advertisements, logistics and data. 

Among the top investors in Meesho are Meta (Facebook), Softbank Vision Fund, Y-Combinator, Elevation Capital, Sequoia Capital, DST Partners, Prosus & Naspers, and Trifecta Capital Advisors, raising a value of $1.1 billion in 11 rounds of financing.

Meesho – A success story

The Bangalore-based startup ranked 8th among the 25 fastest-growing social e-commerce startups in August 2016 according to Mattermark, a data platform tailored to investors. It was also selected as one of three Indian companies for Y Combinator in the same year.

In July 2017, according to the Deccan Chronicle listing, Meesho was among the top 5 social commerce apps.

In February 2018, Forbes India listed Vidit Aatrey and Sanjeev Barnwal among its 30 Under 30 young achievers.

According to Forbes Asia, Meesho was also one of the fastest-growing Indian businesses in 2018.

In April 2018, Google Launchpad chose Meesho for their ‘Solve For India’ program, which helps startups develop technology solutions for Indian challenges.

As of September 2018, Linkedin named Meesho one of the Top 25 startups in India to work for because of its employee rate, jobseeker interest, talent pull, and professional engagement levels.

Meesho was considered the first startup in India to get Venture capital from Facebook in June 2019.

Meesho is the first social e-commerce startup in India to join the unicorn club. The online market is booming by the year and many offline retailers have used it to establish a presence on online social media platforms.


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