The fancy door handle from a big brand that you’ve been eyeing for your new home has likely been manufactured at one of the hundreds of contract manufacturing factories around the country.
Business-to-business (B2B) sourcing platform Bidso positions itself as a bridge between such factories and the brands that lend them their name.
The factories on the platform manufacture products ranging from fitness equipment to sanitaryware, toys, kitchen accessories, and home improvement solutions for scores of big brand names.
Founded earlier this year by Rahul Agarwal, Ashwin Jain, Aditya Krishnakumar, and Vivek Singhal, Bidso has onboarded over 150 factories and facilitates supplies to nearly 27 brands. The founders say their business model is transparent — the platform procures supplies from factories, adds a margin, and sells to the brand companies.
While steering clear of direct manufacturing, the start-up engages in partnerships with onboarded factories, particularly in major manufacturing clusters like the NCR region and Gujarat.
“For instance, we have partnered with a factory in Pondicherry to develop a new model of kid scooters for our customers. We are investing in the moulding and the tooling,” says co-founder Krishnakumar.
The platform co-invests with the factories to develop innovative products.
The partnerships span various product categories, ensuring the availability of at least one supplier in each operational domain.
“In most of the product categories we have at least one supplier partner with whom we have a deep relationship,” Krishnakumar says.
As it lays the groundwork for future growth, the company’s focus currently is on consolidation within existing categories for the next 3–6 months.
“In the next two years, the number of categories will expand significantly, and next year we plan to expand the home improvement category to include hand tools, step ladders, architectural hardware, door handles, channels, and hinges,” he says.
Recently, the company raised funding of $1.5 million to expand operations and demand channels, strengthen a hand-picked group of manufacturers, and construct a technological framework for the business.
Bidso plans to raise its Series A funding next year, says Krishnakumar.
“We are not engaged in talks because we have cash in the bank and have a predictable runway. But the plan is to hit the market for funding by the middle of next year,” he says.
The company eyes big growth from international markets. Currently it has orders from the East African countries Uganda and Kenya, as also West Asian countries, for bathroom and kitchen fittings. It is in talks with Australian customers for toys.
With two large toy companies on its platform already, it seeks to onboard nearly 10 more within two to three months.