Companies

QwikCilver aims to capture global markets

Priyanka Pani Mumbai | Updated on January 08, 2018 Published on October 04, 2017

Gifting solutions firm to launch operations in the US, Singapore and Australia





QwikCilver, a SaaS (Software as a Solution) gifting solutions provider, is looking to expand its base in the international market after having garnered a substantial market share in India.

The Bengaluru-based company is looking to launch operations in the US, Singapore and Australia by December, and also strengthen its operations in West Asian countries, namely the UAE, Egypt, Kuwait, Bahrain and Qatar.

Kumar Sudarshan, co-founder and CTO, QwikCilver, told BusinessLine that the idea is to capture the global markets, where the gift-card segment is big in terms of both value and volume.

“India is no doubt a growing market with large volumes, but the average ticket size is still small compared with markets such as Australia and Singapore. With our international foray, we are eyeing 3x growth next fiscal,” Sudarshan said.

A big shift

He founded Qwikcilver with BITS Pilani batchmates TP Pratap and Bhaskar Vasudevan, in 2008, when gift cards were unheard of and the only options were physical gift stores such as Hallmark and Archies or the gift-vouchers, which had just started picking up due to the then newbies of big-box retail such as Shoppers Stop and Pantaloons.

“We had learnt that gift cards [plastic cards] was getting popular in the US market and had already captured about 30 per cent market there. So we thought of replicating that model in India by tapping corporates and small businesses,” he said, adding that in 10 years, the company has garnered 90 per cent market share in the Indian gift-card segment.

According to industry experts, the country’s gifting market is about ₹33,500 crore ($50 billion), and of that, corporate gifting is about 20 per cent, of which card-based gifting is just a mere 2 per cent.

“We have already done transactions worth ₹3,000 crore in the past years, and are EBITDA positive. This, we have achieved by tapping the growing SMB market, which is always looking for new solutions to improve its employee relations.”

The company has also tied up with retailers to provide the back-end technology for their gift cards, allowing corporates and customers to purchase and redeem gift cards through the brands’ online and offline platforms, Sudarshan added. The gift-cards are powered or issued (as per RBI guidelines) by QwikCilver, depending on the brand’s requirement.

The company, which has raised about $20 million in venture-capital funding from investors such as Amazon, Accel Helion and Sistema, has partnerships with over 150 companies such as Levi Strauss, Taj Hotels, The Oberoi Group, Hackett, Infosys, Landmark Group and Amazon.

In 2015, the firm also launched its own portfolio of gift cards called Woohoo, which can be personalised with photos, text or audio.



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Published on October 04, 2017
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