In the underdeveloped market for rental lifestyle products, Vineet Chawla and Amit Sodhi saw a promising business opportunity. “Till a few years ago, this market was largely unorganised. And local players offered little or no variety, convenience, or value for money,” says 49-year-old Chawla.
To address the need for quality lifestyle rental services, especially among the young professionals, who are unsure about the duration of their stay in a particular locality, Chawla and Sodhi founded Rentickle in November 2015.
“Purchasing, bargaining, logistics, labour, installation and then selling or transporting goods when moving to a different city is inconvenient and expensive. So we decided to offer trendy lifestyle products at the click of a mouse at just 2-3% (monthly rental) of what the products cost,” says Sodhi, 39. The startup provides home appliances, consumer electronics, furniture, cameras, water and air purifiers, among other things, on a three-, six- and nine- and 12-month subscription.
Rentickle has an in house design team and dedicated manufacturing facilities for supplying furniture and has partnered with brands such as LG and Livpure for home appliances and consumer electronics. “Our products are supplied to clients in mint condition by our logistics team, which delivers and installs them free of cost. We also offer free maintenance,” says Chawla.
The startup currently offers its services in Delhi NCR and Hyderabad and has around 10,000 subscribers. Its clientele mainly comprises professionals who move across cities on shortterm work assignments, students pursuing higher studies away from their home towns and expatriates visiting the country for extended periods.
For the founders, who raised Rs 40 lakh from a clutch of angel investors, bringing in investors and building a motivated and committed team were among the early major challenges. They have managed to overcome both. The startup has drawn fresh talent from leading institutes such as IITs and experienced professionals from top companies to build a team of 55, committed to the founders’ vision.
Investor support too has been forthcoming: Rentickle raised Rs 2 crore in funding in July 2016 and Rs 25 crore in November 2017. The startup, which generated Rs 2.2 crore in revenue in 2016-17, is now planning to expand its staff, geographical presence and product offerings.
“We are constantly innovating on our designs and processes to serve our clients better as we scale up after the recent fund infusion,” says Chawla. Winner of Super Startup of the Year, 2016-2017, by Super Brands and Brand Of the Year, Rental, 2016-2017, by Silicon India, Rentickle is in the process of rolling out operation in Bengaluru and will expand to a few more Tier-1 cities by end-2018. “Our vision is to offer our services across the country and be the number one choice for all your renting ..