Products comparison sites are aplenty in India, with Amazon Inc's Junglee.com and Helion Venture-backed MySmartPrice being in the forefront. However, none of the existing sites offer a single-click solution for product comparison. This is where Noida- and California-based Copperpix Inc. comes into play. The one-year-old startup has developed a new solution called ValueTag that enables users to compare prices of various products with a single click while shopping on e-commerce sites.
"ValueTag is an easy-to-use platform that helps online shoppers to compare products and purchase them at the lowest possible prices without having to waste much time by searching on a multitude of sites," said Anubhav Gupta, co-founder of Copperpix.
The startup was founded in February last year by the trio of Gupta, Sapna Mittal and Nitin Mittal (not related). Gupta is an alumnus of IIT Bombay, who also holds a MBA degree from the University of Texas. He had earlier worked at companies like Freescale and Motorola. Sapna holds a masters degree in computer science and had previously worked at Apple Inc. Nitin is an MBA from Indian Institute of Rural Management (Jaipur) and had worked at ICICI Bank before starting the venture.
As the name indicates, it is basically a value tag that appears right on top of each product that you browse on e-shopping sites. This product is available as a browser extension, besides an Android app. With a single tap on the 'ValueTag' button, you will get the complete list of the comparative pricings across all the e-com sites in the same window, along with their respective reviews.
"You can also use ValueTag while shopping offline. Using our barcode scanner capability, you can scan the barcode of a product with your mobile phone and get the best prices for it at various online platforms," he said.
The company has also developed an Augmented Reality (AR) platform called AugmentInk, which will be merged with ValueTag to enable offline shoppers to get all the information about a particular product just by pointing their smartphones to it. "This will be useful when you are in a shopping mall or at a retail outlet. In addition to getting relevant information including the comparative pricing details, you can also buy the product right away," Gupta explained.
Traction and revenue models
As of now, ValueTag has partnered with more than 150 brands in the US and 80 in India. The firm generates revenues mainly through the partnerships with these brands. It is also looking to introduce an ad-based revenue model in the near future.
"Opportunities are aplenty in India and elsewhere. The Indian e-commerce market is still in the nascent stages and there is huge scope for new technologies. Interestingly, even the US market still remains untapped when it comes to adopting innovative technologies, especially in the mobile space," Gupta noted.
With 10 people on board, ValueTag is facing competitions mainly from traditional price comparison sites. "There is a steep competition in this space. RedLAser (acquired by eBay), Google Shopping in the US, Junglee.com (acquired by Amazon) and Compare Raja in India are some of them. Additionally, brick-and-mortar retail giants like Macy's and Nordstrom are ramping up their efforts to integrate digital technologies with in-store operations in response to significant losses of in-store sales to online shopping platforms," he explained.
Copperpix is also looking to raise capital, "We are already in talks with a few investors and VC firms who have deep knowledge of the e-commerce space and can add value to our business," Gupta concluded.
(Edited by Joby Puthuparampil Johnson)