With 30M pet dogs and 4M pet cats, India is the world’s fastest-growing market for pet care. Covid lockdowns accelerated pet adoption across the world, and India was no exception. Since 2020, 6 lakh pets have been adopted every year. At the household level though, this translates to just about 6% penetration, and indicates massive headroom for growth. In the metros, for instance, every fifth home includes a pet. And as the trend grows, India will see more and more first-time pet owners – a large market with no clear pan-India platform to meet their growing needs.
In a world where pets are called fur babies, have Instagram handles of their own, and are in every respect a four-legged member of the family, pet care has been a space we have followed quite keenly. As pet owners ourselves, we are aware of product and service gaps, as well as the challenges in building a large platform that serves and delights an all-India audience, particularly in the fast-growing and thoroughly underserved Tier 2 and 3 towns. We believe the time is right to enter this sector and help build an enduring consumer platform.
Supertails co-founders Varun, Aman, and Vineet are no strangers to us at Fireside, and we’ve been following their journey since the trio moved on from Licious. With their complementary skills in supply chain, marketing, technology, finance and HR, they truly form a best-in-class founding team. With extensive experience in the food supply chain space at Licious, they are adept at building for fulfilment at scale, and managing inventory for a platform. In less than two years, we have seen them build out a robust, first-of-its-kind vertically integrated e-commerce platform designed to be a one-stop shop for all things related to pet care.
Most pet parents are forced to rely on specialty pet stores or shop online on horizontal e-commerce platforms offering a very limited assortment of pet products. Beyond Tier 1 cities, the absence of specialty stores and long delivery timelines of popular e-commerce platforms further complicate the issue. Outside the metros, experienced veterinary help with dogs and cats is rare, and sometimes quite inaccessible in these geographies.
From veterinary consultations to pet food, accessories and supplements, Supertails has something to meet the needs of every kind of pet parent, whether first-timer or lifelong, and is designed to handhold the pet parent through every stage of a pet’s life.
Its growing lineup of 200+ brands and 7,000 SKUs significantly surpass the alternate choices available to pet parents today, while the founding team’s familiarity with supply chain complexity has led the brand to ensure nationwide serviceability within 2 days, with the majority of metro orders being fulfilled within 24 hours.
Supertails is a full stack online-first platform, with strong repeat (3M at ~40%) and retention cohorts. The platform has been showing strong Month-on-Month growth since launch.
A vertically integrated e-commerce platform, Supertails is designed to offer new-age consumers the widest array of pet products possible along with service offerings like vet services and a pet buddy. The future product roadmap includes a mobile app, as well as an e-pharmacy, which will help establish its leadership position as an end-to-end digitally native platform for pet care.
90% of Supertails customers said they would recommend the brand to a fellow pet parent, and an overwhelming 80% bought from the store every month. These customers explained their preference as being due to greater choice, faster delivery, veterinary support, or a combination of all these factors.
The strength of its supply chain and inventory management expertise allows Supertails to fulfil over 30% orders within a day with an average pan India delivery time of 2.8 days. The combination of the widest array of pet product offerings fulfilled at the shortest possible wait time is perhaps the platforms biggest differentiator.
Currently the pet care market is ~INR 4400 Cr and is expected to scale to ~USD 2 Bn by 2027 as per various industry estimates, driven by factors like declining household size and rising GDP per capita. Similar factors played a key role in China’s pet boom which commenced in 2010. Further, the pet food segment, which accounts for the lion’s share at 85% of the pet care market, is largely monopolised by 3 large brands making it ripe for disruption by insurgent brands – Supertails has recently launched their own private label pet food brand “Henlo” to capitalise on this opportunity.At Fireside Ventures, we are looking forward to watching Supertails disrupt the entire pet care space, and feel truly privileged to be a partner in their journey.