Soptle, a Software as a service (or SaaS) led B2B retail commerce platform, has raised an undisclosed angel round led by Soonicorn LLP and a clutch of marquee logistics leaders such as Vaishnav Shetty (Executive Director and CDO of All-cargo Group) Pirojshaw Sarkari (CEO of Gati Ltd), and Saurabh Agarwal (Ex-Founder Fitso(Acquired by Zomato) etc, participated in this round.
Launched in May 2022, by 20-year-old engineering school dropout Pravas Chandragiri, Soptle Is a micro SaaS-led B2B retail commerce platform that helps consumer goods companies distribute products by using its network of over 15,000 retailers across the country. It also has about 400 distributors and 60 manufacturers on its platform.
Pravas comes from a small town Balasore, in Odisha. Right from the age of 12 years, he has been operating and helping his uncle scale up his Kirana store. That’s where he learnt about the pain points of Kirana stores and understood the inefficiencies of the FMCG supply chain. He started on the entrepreneurial journey from a young age of 17 years and consolidated all of his learnings and network to start up Soptle.
Chandragiri said he has identified that an assortment of products, regional brands, poor margins, and zero-bargain power were some of the bigger pain points of smaller neighbourhood stores, which led him to start working towards solving them and helping kiranas grow and scale.
As per industry estimates, there is a Kirana (grocery) shop for every 100 households in India. Thus, there are almost one million Kirana shops that are potential customers for a retail commerce model providing them with the opportunity to compete effectively with modern retail options online and offline and grow their businesses profitably.
Pravas Chandragiri, Founder of Soptle, said, “We have a unique distribution approach to building India’s largest FMCG distribution SaaS platform that activates critical connections between FMCG manufacturers and distributors/wholesale as well as retailers. It also enables FMCG manufacturers to supply products to millions of retailers all over India, creating powerful, positive change for these stakeholders.”
“This fundraise is a real representation of the vision we have at Soptle, which is to build an operating system-powered Software as a service (or SaaS) Platform for the Indian FMCG community, beginning with the Manufacturers who are the cornerstone of the FMCG industry. The funds raised will be used to expand Soptle’s distribution network across the country, scale product capabilities as well as grow the team,” Pravas further said.
By digitising and incentivising FMCG manufacturers, Soptle has created an asset-light one-stop platform that eliminates the unorganised and inefficient middlemen from the traditional supply chain. There are an estimated 10-15 million Kirana stores in India, commanding a $500 billion FMCG market. This leaves a promising opportunity for a platform like this to create a capital-efficient and direct distribution network for both the manufacturer and retailer community with the help of technology.
Saurabh Agarwal, Partner at Soonicorn LLP, said, “We are excited to partner with Soptle as they approach their vision of creating a cutting-edge, asset-light, tech-driven model that enables FMCG Manufacturers and retailers in boosting their incomes. The company has achieved impressive growth in its retailer base in less than a quarter while simultaneously striving to enhance the lives of the FMCG Manufacturers they collaborate with.”