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Online wedding services provider Weddingz.in to expand offline; set up retail stores

Online wedding services provider Weddingz.in, which was acquired by OYO Hotels & Homes in 2018, is looking to expand its offline presence by setting up retail stores.

According to Sandeep Lodha, CEO, Weddingz.in, plans are afoot to set up 100-200 stores across the country in the next 12-15 months.

“In October itself we wish to open over 10 stores in Delhi. Our strategy is to focus on one city at a time, get everything right and then move to another city. Mumbai would be the next city, followed by Kolkata, Lucknow and Pune, which are very important markets for us,” Lodha told BusinessLine.

The store will offer consumers a one-stop-shop for all wedding-related requirements, including venue and non-venue services, such as photography, mehendi, transport, and make-up services, among others. The physical store will help the company evolve from being an online service enabler to an omnichannel platform.

The retail showroom will help bridge the gap between the brand and the consumers by allowing real-time interaction and providing a good customer experience.

The stores would be around 500 sq ft in size and would be company-owned and company-managed.

“We are not looking at franchisees as the idea is to enhance customer experience. Once a customer walks in we will take all his/her requirements and once we understand that we will help provide him/her all services,” he said.

The company expects around 30 per cent of the demand to come from the offline channel in the next 12-15 months.

Wedding market growing

The wedding market in India, which is estimated at around $50 billion, has been growing at around 15-20 per cent year-on-year. Venue spend is estimated to be close to 50-60 per cent of the total market, followed by photography, make-up, and apparel, among others.

“We have seen good growth in the requirement of venue, as multiple functions, such as mehndi, sangeet, and bachelorette, form part of the wedding celebrations. The other areas where we see good demand coming in is from photography, make-up and apparel,” he said.

Weddingz.in witnessed 480 per cent growth in revenue in the last one year. The company claims to have serviced over 25,000 events till date, a majority of them being wedding and wedding-related.

“We also conduct corporate events, which account for around 20 per cent of our total business, the remaining 80 per cent is non-corporate, which includes primarily wedding and wedding-related events,” he said.

Source: The Hindu