The Gurgaon-based cashback and coupon website CashKaro.com which has raised Rs 25 crore in its Series A funding round from Kalaari Capital in November 2015, and a very small amount of investment from Ratan Tata in January this year, is very close to achieve its break-even. In an exclusive conversation with indianretailer.com, Rohan Bhargava, Co-founder, Cashkaro.com, said, “We are very close to our break-even. In fact, we should be profitable in next 18 to 20 months.” The raised funds are being utilised to ramp up marketing, technology and expanding the human resource. Currently, the company has the human resource of 75 people. As of now, CashKaro is earning minimum 10% commission of every transaction that happened via Cashkaro collaborated e-retailer.
The company is scouting for suitable investors to support its future campaigns. “We would be keen for Series B and C funding from the investors who are sufficiently funded to support us in our future campaigns. We are also looking for expansion in to new countries,” informed Bhargava.
Presently, the company is registering ten to twenty thousand transactions per day, and has tied up close to 1200 online retailers including category leaders like Flipkart, Amazon, yatra, makemytrip, and so on. The company is in talks with many offline retailers to initiate a programme that would offer an add-on value to customer on existing loyalty programme that is run by the retailer.
Speaking on same Bhargava said, “In next two weeks I will be able to give provide more information on same. We are in talks with many offline retailers. Again, our offerings will be add-on to existing loyalty programme offered by the retailer. We would be working with retailer on making customer experience seamless. Our motive is, for customers, the speed of getting the cashback should be great. Same time, the entire exercise should fetch value to retailer. On top of that, the specific needs of the retailer should be addressed.” The company is also very bullish on tier 2 expansion. Currently, 40 percent of its traffic comes from small towns. The company is also looking to tap unorganized players (in retail segment) from small towns.
No doubt, affiliate marketing sites like CashKaro can help to maintain a diversity of sources for customer traffic in a cost effective way. In fact, in some cases affiliate traffic may be better as affiliate sites usually already provide some context to the product (for instance, product comparison websites or lifestyle blogs), so the traffic is more of qualified leads. “Currently, with footfalls and spending being affected by a muted consumer sentiment, cashback deals and coupons can help to create not only traffic, but conversions for brands,” Shared Devangshu Dutta, Chief Executive, Third Eyesight.
“However, in the longer term, the business environment for affiliate websites is tougher – over time, with fewer online players to send their traffic to, commissions may be squeezed, margins slabs could be changed, and the period for expiry of a referral may be shortened. Therefore, expanding the offline footprint and deeper penetration into the market is vital for the sustained success of an affiliate marketing player,” he summed up.