Since 2000, we’ve seen company networks in many flavors. More recently, verticalisation has been the need of the hour, as just one segment in any market isn’t enough anymore. Quikr has five key business segments as it takes a leap and focuses deeper into the sector. It is now focusing on automobiles, jobs, services, customer-to-customer sales and now with QuikrHomes, they are firmly into Real Estate as well.. This new addition will help the company generate more revenues, or even probably multiply the existing.
Quikr, since its inception in 2008, has raised around $350 million from investors like Investment AB Kinnevik, Tiger Global Management, Steadview Capital Management and Matrix Partners India, and others. It jumping into verticalisation now is no news as we expected it coming very soon.
The move would give Quikr an upper hand in fending off its rivals in form of competitors, which are backed by capital and partnerships. The five categories, which Quikr is focusing, account for about 90% of the 10 million listings on the platform. While we saw that the company launched QuikrCars last month as a separate segment, the other categories will be launched in the next three to four weeks.
Earlier on June News reports suggest that property listings site Housing.com is on the block, and the most likely buyer is online classifieds portal Quikr.
“Our kind of business is very brand-building driven and the biggest investment in this space is marketing. The reason it (creating verticals and sub-brands) makes a lot of sense is, every dollar we spend on QuikrHomes also helps QuikrCarsbecause people know about the company,” said Pranay Chulet, co-founder and chief executive at Quikr.
The online real estate segment is now seeing a consolidation drive with IndiaProperty and IndiaHomes trying to team up and News Corp-backed PropTiger, taking over Makaan.com in May.
Interestingly, the company now has on board some a real good team. Their team comprises of people from various portals like Timesjobs, Yatra and Sulekha, among others, to helm the verticals, which is now going to drive the company towards generating bigger revenues.
The company was valued at almost $1 billion during its last funding round in April earlier this year.
Quikr Funding Chart
|First Round||Matrix Partners||2008||N/A|
|Second Round||Omidyar Network & existing investors||July 2009||$4M|
|Third Round||Norwest Venture Partners & existing investors||Mar 2010||$6M|
|Fourth Round||Nokia Growth Partners & existing investors||May 2011||$8M|
|Fifth Round||Warburg Pincus & existing investors||May 2012||$32M|
|Sixth Round||Kinnevik Capital & existing investors||Mar 2014||$90M|
|Seventh Round||Tiger Global Management & existing investors||Sept 2014||$60M|
|Eighth Round||Tiger Global, Investment AB Kinnevik, Steadview Capital||Apr 2015||$150M|
For the company which is currently at a million paid listings, this transition is very uncommon for an Internet company, after having several millions of dollars from investors. Lately, even Zomato went from just being an app, which reviews restaurants to taking orders, making payments and tracking deliveries. Such is the need of the hour, when you need to push your feet into various other segments to stay in the big market game.
“Verticalization helps you convey what you don’t do. As you serve a lot of people, your identity gets diffused, so the more you verticalize, you signal what you don’t do,” said Anand Ramanathan, director at KPMG Advisory Services. “Ultimately, when competition catches up, you have to focus on a few things and show where your competency lies. Thus, the quality of transactions also improves if you verticalize,” he added.
Quikr claims that with 200,000 transactions, its real estate business has doubled in the last three years. Now we shall wait to see new figures after some tough laid focus on verticalisation.