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Think Global: Building your D2C brand globally and selling to the International customer


The pandemic has laid down the foundation of the e-commerce industry and the D2C world. Many brands are looking to foray globally seeing its huge opportunity. According to research, online sales will obtain $6.39 trillion, with e-commerce taking up 21.8% of overall retail earnings. In India alone, the e-commerce market is expected to reach $100 billion by 2025. The potential for D2C brands to start their global journey has increased because of the strengthening of India’s digital infrastructure.

The panelists of the session included:

Jugal Mistry, Founder, Bombay Trooper
Pallavi Desai, Founder, Creatures of Habit
Pavan Ponnappa, Head of Categories, Acquisition & Marketing, eBay India CBT
Rushika Bhatia, Co-Founder, Talisman
Siddha Jain, Chief Business Ofiicer, Bombay Shaving Company Women

And the session was moderated by Venkat Nott, Founder and CEO, Vinculum

Talking Points:

  • Approach of the D2C brands to enter in International Market
  • Emerging new categories from Indian products that can stand globally
  • Brand building techniques
  • Enablers for D2C brands to sell globally
  • Best practices in cross border selling and onboarding of D2C Brands

An explosion of new direct-to-consumer companies is transforming how people shop. In the process, these brands, spanning everything from detergent to sneakers, are radically changing consumer preferences and expectations. They are targeting a particular age group and are providing customized experiences to them.

Rushika Bhatia, Co-founder, of Talisman said on this “Our target consumer is the modern women aged between 25 and 40 years, who’re working and are from Metro Tier-1 city. They have their own fixed disposable income and our idea was to tap into the concept of changing jewellery as per your mood and wearing them with versatility, just how you handle your wardrobe and clothes. For us, it was creating that experience for that particular target audience and COVID gave us that opportunity to leverage what the customers were looking for and turn things around.”

She also told us about the change she saw in the customer’s mindset during the pandemic, “One of the major transformations, I felt, was the shift in the customers from traditional marketplaces to D2C brands. Per month the user turn out to be large in number. For e.g.: Amazon has around 5.7 billion users coming in on their website and eBay has around 1.6 billion users. Pallavi Desai, Founder, of Creatures of Habit has not started their brand’s journey into the marketplace and stated the reason, “We have not moved into marketplaces. As we are not from the apparel sector, the last two years have been a learning experience for us. We have got into our manufacturing and we just want to learn before we lose the control and get into marketplaces.”

In D2C, customers are not able to touch and experience the product only through technology, D2C brands are making that happen. Bhatia told us how their brand creates a touch and feel experience for its customers and stated “We don’t have any sort of intuitive right now but in the first year we did a lot of roadshows and exhibitions that saw participation from all across the country. We targeted Comic Con in Bengaluru to ammunition that can translate the online experience.”

Pavan Ponnappa, Head of Categories, Acquisition, and Marketing, eBay India CBT told us how any brand can start its International journey and highlighted, “There’s no single answer to it as every brand has its own specific characteristic with their ambition, purpose involved in it and they are looking to solve a problem statement. Before going International, it becomes important to decide on the market and as a platform, we have that liberty to data and trends across each market to determine what has made sense for the brand. There are certain categories where Indian products/ craftsmanship clearly stand out. Jewelry is one of the prime examples which got a significant advantage as compared to the other product segments. In the clothing sector, a brand needs to be more specific about which kind of clothing, what type of price point, and other factors as well.”