In 2014, when the Indian market was “hungry for standardised and quality at-home services” three Indian entrepreneurs - Abhiraj Bahl, Raghav Chandra, and Varun Khaitan forayed into the Indian start-up world with their venture UrbanClap.
Over five years later, today the company provides an at-home beauty, spa, repairs, cleaning, painting, and fitness service in India, as well as in Sydney, Abu Dhabi, Dubai, and Singapore.
On Thursday, the co-founders announced the rebranding of their platform to "UrbanCompany" in order to give their teams of professionals worldwide a formally structured working experience.
On the sidelines of the announcement, Bahl divulged while their at-home beauty parlour services are flourishing in India, their on-the-door cleaning services are topping the list in international markets.
“In other countries, housemaids are expensive. They regularly need house cleaning services and that is the category that is doing extremely well in our international markets,” said Bahl.
The company experimented with providing services across 60 sectors, including wedding planning. However, they later streamlined their portfolio on the basis of their market analysis.
Now that men around the world are prioritising their "beauty needs", UrbanCompany is sure, that this sector will boom in all of its markets, including India.
According to a 2018 report by the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM), the market for men's grooming products is one of the fastest-growing product categories in the country. It is expected to grow by 45 percent to more than $3 billion ( Rs.35,000 crore approx.) by 2022.
“We are bullish on our men’s grooming category that sends all of the regular barber-shop services for men directly at home,” Bahl added.
According to Bahl, for companies aiming to expand abroad, ensuring the safety of their customers as well as their staff must be of primary importance.
“We have worked with Microsoft to devise a unique photo-ID system that requires our staff members to authenticate their service visits with a selfie. We also have an emergency SOS number for emergency cases,” the UrbanCompany Co-founder noted.
The company plans to hold off on further expansion plans for the next 18-24 months.