Many Milestones To Achieve Before We Go Public: Shiprocket’s CTO Sunil Kumar 

The e-commerce and shipping software solutions provider is focused on becoming a single roof platform for all e-commerce-related activities, as it bets big on integrating cutting-edge technology for Indian merchants irrespective of pin codes in India. 
Many Milestones To Achieve Before We Go Public: Shiprocket’s CTO Sunil Kumar 

On a tech talk hosted by Shiprocket to showcase the company’s journey of transforming the e-commerce landscape by making the process of “add to cart” to “have received the order” seamless through the integration of the tech stack and insights from consumer behavior, Sunil Kumar, chief technology officer, engaged in an exclusive conversation with Outlook Business to emphasize the company’s vision to stay committed to shipping as their'mothership’ but also voyaging into moving higher in the e-commerce ecosystem by acing up on the tech game. 

Edited excerpts 

1. In the past 2 years, Shiprocket has been focusing on a lot of acquisitions. How has the company been able to manage the acquisition spree? 

We have been making many major acquisitions, such as Rocketbox and Pickrr, in the past 24 months. The focus is to first integrate them into the mainstream business of Shiprocket, along with utilizing their expertise and what’s best that they can do to add value for our customers through it. Managing it has been a smooth process, as the acquisitions have always been a logical extension of our offerings in the e-commerce value chain, and we will continue to onboard more services on our platform as long as they align with our vision. 

2. What is the company’s vision for profitability since your losses have increased lately? 

Shiprocket’s core shipping business has been profitable for a long time now. However, as we have done a few acquisitions in order to provide more value to our offerings, it comes with its own set of challenges, where you need to work on the inefficiencies and the streamlining in integrating those businesses with ours, which comes at a cost of efforts and building a new tech stack. This is where we are spending, but going forward, this will get balanced, and we are confident in attaining profitability by FY 25. 

3. Is the company eyeing the IPO market anytime soon? 

Currently, a lot of focus is on getting the enablement platform to the next level in terms of growth and scaling up. We are actively trying out new things in the beta version, and many have rolled out too. We are introducing same-day shipping starting next month, along with many new developments that are planned for the future. 

Going public is, of course, in the pipeline, but first we want to reach a few milestones that are very crucial for us. Our main focus remains on shipping and scaling growth in the sector, along with making e-commerce accessible to every corner of India and to every merchant. Right now, we are the 4th largest e-commerce platform in India, with a GMV of Rs 25,000 crores and around 100,000 merchants, which we want to scale up more and more until we reach all the pin codes in India. So, there’s a certain stage we would want to reach before tapping the IPO market. 

4. How effective has Shiprocket Capital proved to be for SMBs? Do you plan to come up with your own NBFC as you go forward with the financing model? 

We launched Shiprocket Capital in a pilot phase as a revenue-based financing model for SMBs; it has been quite some months, and in the first phase, we have enabled over 150 SMBs with capital to streamline their businesses. The response is great, as it not only provides financing but also ensures that they don’t have to compromise on their equity and business. 

We have partnered with major NBFCs like InCred, Velocity, and Stride to enable Shiprocket Capital, so we don’t need to set up our own NBFC for that purpose as our core remains shipping. 

5. Shiprocket is betting big on WhatsApp; how are you looking at it? 

WhatsApp has taken over a major part of India and has around 500 million users, and we can’t ignore it. It ought to become a great tool for SMBs to grow their businesses. At Shiprocket, we have integrated the SaaS dashboard with WhatsApp so that merchants can set up the shopping experience and can also directly connect with the customers, who are updated about everything from placing the order to shipping, tracking, and so on. 

6. You are trying to build a platform where all elements of e-commerce come together under one roof. How are you keeping up with the ever-changing technology? 

We want to make e-commerce very seamless and enabling for the SMB's, and hence we want to bring everything under one platform for them. Currently, we have a team of 300 engineers who are helping us build the tech stack, develop the products, and scale them. We are providing a suite of various products to our merchants, such as an e-commerce enabling platform, WhatsApp commerce, an API marketplace for data analytics, ONDC integration, etc. We are also providing influencer marketing services to all SMBs within their budget through our partner company, One Impression. 

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