BrainBees Solutions, which owns online kids products retailer FirstCry, has reported narrowing of losses at its online retailing business.

The Pune-based company reported a loss of Rs 54 crore for the year ended March 2018, as per its financial documents filed with the Registrar of Companies. As per the documents, which were assessed on data site Tofler, the company has trimmed its losses by almost seven times from ₹393 crore in the previous year. Prior to that the losses hovered around ₹277 crore.

The company has improved its sales to ₹355 crore in the financial year 2018 compared to ₹239 crore in the previous year, when the losses were more than the sales.

In talks to raise funds

FirstCry, which is the largest retailer in the baby products segment, is in talks with investors to raise $100 million (₹720 crore as of today’s exchange rate), according to media reports The company has so far raised $125 million (₹812 crore) from investors, including SAIF Partners, Temasek Holdings, Valiant Capital Partners, IDG Ventures, Infosys co-founder Kris Gopalakrishnan and also Mahindra Group.

Founded by serial entrepreneur Supam Maheshwari in 2010, FirstCry has offline stores with an omni-channel approach to increase its sales and presence. The company acquired Mahindra Group’s kids retail brand BabyOye for ₹362 crore in a cash and stock deal in 2016..

Growth prospects

Mother and baby care market in India is growing at 17 per cent, according to a Tracxn report. Another report says that the market will grow to $31 billion by 2020 compared to $14 billion at present. Increased growth in double income parents, parental awareness and other socio-economic factors will aid the growth in this market, which has witnessed emergence of several niche players and me-too players leading to massive competition.

Recently, Gurugram-based mother and baby care startup MamaEarth raised about $4 million (₹27.5 crore) in a Series A round of funding led by early-stage technology-focussed venture capital (VC) firm Stellaris Ventures. Mumbai-based BabyChakra and Healofy also raised funds.