This startup is helping MSMEs in India export to global markets – makes it easy for NRIs to get hand-picked delicacies.

Imagine living in the United States as an NRI and suddenly craving an Indore delicacy. You wait for your next visit to India because there’s simply no way you can get that regional dessert without making ten thousand calls to ten thousand people and paying a lot of money for it. 

It’s incredibly difficult if you want that delicacy from Indore – but imagine if you wanted different things from multiple cities! Even more complicated, right?

Now imagine the same craving – but with India Shopping, a digital e-commerce platform that lets you shop anything from India from the comfort of your home. Now you get whatever you want in the smoothest way possible.

Founded in July 2023, India Shopping is an innovative e-commerce platform, seamlessly facilitating the export of Indian goods from small and medium scale enterprises while offering international customers easy access to the diverse offerings of this culturally rich nation.

The Journey Begins: Rahul Bhatt’s Small Town Roots

At the helm of India Shopping is Rahul Bhatt, a visionary entrepreneur whose roots trace back to the small town of Jaora, nestled next to Ratlam in Madhya Pradesh. 

His journey from the heart of India to the global stage is not just a personal success but also a precedent for the youth of small towns in India.

Rahul’s educational journey began in Jaora, followed by engineering studies at the Mandsaur Institute of Technology.

Two Decades in Fintech Giants

Rahul’s professional career unfolded across various Indian and international fintech companies. 

From roles at HSBC, Impetus, Dun & Bradstreet to Lending Club and Plastiq, Rahul immersed himself in diverse domains—business process improvement, payment solutions, lean engineering, and software architecture. 

His innovative spirit also led to the creation of an online community comprising 7,000+ real estate investors exploring the SF Bay area. 

Identifying a Global Need: The Birth of India Shopping

Around mid-2023, Rahul keenly observed a significant pain point for Non-Resident Indians (NRIs). 

The process of obtaining anything from India was laden with hassles, requiring individuals to navigate a labyrinth of contacts to procure and have items delivered abroad. 

It was this realisation that spurred Rahul to embark on a new venture, India Shopping, with a dual vision in mind.

A Digital Bridge: Smoothing Cross-Border Transactions

India Shopping was conceptualised as a digital bridge, simplifying the intricate process of cross-border transactions. 

Additionally, Rahul Bhatt set out to empower small and medium vendors and traders in India to find a footing in international markets by making exports easier for them.

Today, India Shopping not only allows users worldwide to effortlessly shop for Indian products but also streamlines the export process for small regional businesses, particularly mom-and-pop stores. 

Importantly, India Shopping currently operates on a commission-free model, positioning itself as a champion for grassroots enterprises in India.

Traditional export systems take place via containers in the B2B segment – and the order reaches an international customer in 2 to 3 months. 

But India Shopping has revolutionised this and introduced a faster, smoother way for exports to happen from MSMEs to abroad.

My aim is to make small-scale business people in India thrive. I know that their products deserve a global audience, and with India Shopping, I want them to get the recognition they deserve. We aren’t charging any commission from these mom and pop stores”, said Rahul during an interview with Startup Pedia.

The user-facing application on the UI side ensures a smooth and intuitive shopping experience for customers, while the backend operations are powered by the robust Rizili company. 

This synergy of front-end accessibility and back-end efficiency positions India Shopping as a holistic solution for those seeking authentic Indian products.

Commencing as a consumer-driven brand, India Shopping initially garnered support from friends and family.

Rahul Bhatt said, “Our first order came from Ohio. Someone had ordered namkeen.”

Prioritising quality over aggressive marketing, India Shopping gradually scaled its operations. 

The turning point arrived in September 2023 when the platform expanded its reach, initiating operations in key cities such as Indore, Ahmedabad, Jaipur, Ajmer.

Fulfilling Desires: The Concept of Regional Product Accessibility

At the heart of India Shopping’s success lies a simple yet powerful concept: anyone, anywhere in the world, can procure specific regional products from India effortlessly. 

Each city boasts its officers dedicated to initiating streamlined processes, ensuring larger shipments benefit from more competitive pricing.

Whether it’s a craving for sweets from Rajasthan or a desire for authentic namkeen from the heartland, India Shopping brings these desires to the doorsteps of consumers across 38 U.S. states and seven countries.

Growth and Numbers 

India Shopping has effectively served more than 1,000 customers, solidifying its strong global presence. 

In a recent interview with Startup Pedia, Rahul Bhatt disclosed that the current sales for India Shopping stand at nearly Rupees 1 crore, accumulated over the past 8-9 months, during which they have operated in 38 U.S. states and seven countries. 

Most of these orders come from customers but they are going after the businesses as well.

Looking ahead

Looking ahead, India Shopping envisions further expansion into diverse sectors, including elderly care for parents back home. Additionally, there are plans to offer other investment products as well.

We are not going to build products for each and every vertical. Instead , we will find market leader companies in these domains and build a platform on their offerings so they are NRI-focused. It’s the same thing we did with e-commerce”, Rahul Bhatt said.

Currently operational in 10 cities across Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, and Gujarat, India Shopping plans to extend its reach to metropolitan hubs like Mumbai, Pune, Delhi, Hyderabad, and Chennai.