Urban households hoard Rs 56, 200 crore worth of unused goods: OLX CRUST Survey

By afaqs! news bureau , afaqs!, New Delhi | In Digital | February 23, 2015
If these goods are brought out in the used market, they can give a huge fillip to the market for second-hand goods.


OLX.in has revealed the results of the second edition of its OLX CRUST (Consumer Research on Used-Goods and Selling Trends) Survey for 2014-15. The survey estimates the size of the used goods market in India to be Rs 56,200 Crore (USD 9,029 million). Last year, CRUST estimated the used goods market to be worth Rs 22,000 crore.

The report points out that goods worth Rs 56,200 crore are simply lying locked at people's homes in the form of items which are no longer being used, across urban India. The potential of used household items being stocked can be unleashed if these goods are sold, thereby, creating a sustainable market for second-hand goods.

The survey results were announced in the presence of industry leaders and experts including Amarjit Batra, CEO, OLX India; Dhiraj Nayyar, economist and CEO, Think India Foundation; Santosh Desai, MD & CEO of Futurebrands India and Shiv Visvanathan, renowned social scientist.

CRUST is the first comprehensive research in India that estimates the size of the used goods market and examines key attitudes towards used goods. The latest survey has discovered that one-fifth of the goods being stocked in urban Indian homes have ceased to be relevant to them. It was conceived by OLX as an attempt to understand and analyse the used goods space in India. In addition to conceiving the CRUST Survey in 2013-14, OLX also conceptualised the term 'Brown Money' that refers to the money that is locked in goods gathering dust in our homes.

Amarjit Singh Batra

Amarjit Singh Batra, CEO, OLX India, says, "Before we instituted CRUST in 2013-14, there were only guess estimates on the size of the used goods market in India. CRUST, for the first time, put a figure on this market - Rs 22,000 crore in 2014, and Rs 56,200 crore in 2015, just in urban India. If we take the whole country into account, then this number will be much higher. At OLX, we are committed to helping people unlock the money hidden in used items. From a country of scarcity, we are moving towards a country of abundance, for at least some people. People are buying more, consuming more, and, in the process, wasting more. OLX helps people waste less through collaborative consumption and extending the life-cycle of the products."

"As a brand, OLX aspires to positively impact the nation, the environment and the lives of people. 'Brown Money' has a favourable impact on personal finances and the overall economy. By helping goods find right homes, we are also ensuring greater utilisation of products and less wastage. And, by providing a platform for people to sell and buy used goods, we are managing to touch their lives by helping them fulfill their aspirations," he adds.

The report points out that stocking has been a prominent trend this year as well, with 87 per cent households stocking used goods in India, while 45 per cent indulging in selling them.

While Northern India tops the selling chart with 48 per cent households doing so, the Eastern region leads stocking with 97 per cent, and the West is the frontrunner in buying of used goods. 83 per cent of Delhi households have unused items lying at home. Kolkata residents seem to be the most eager to sell their used goods - 85 per cent respondents said so - while Bengaluru is the least-selling friendly metro. The heritage city of Lucknow records the highest sale of books with 31 per cent people selling off their used books.

The key reason for stocking remains to be a wish to use these goods at a later date. (31 per cent households said so). 18 per cent owe their stocking habits to the sentimental value attached with the goods.

The wish to upgrade to better products triggers about 51 per cent of the respondents to sell; close to 33 per cent people sell used goods because they feel that the goods are simply lying at home unused.

While, overall, the highest motivational factor for buying used goods is that these products are less expensive than new goods (69 per cent said so), 50 per cent respondents also buy used goods because the product quality meets their requirements.

The top three categories of goods stocked across India are clothing, kitchen utensils, and books. This is followed by mobile phones.

Books are the highest sold products with 17 per cent having done so in the last one year. Categories with high-value and high perceived usability, such as mobile phones, experience a higher incidence of selling, compared to last year.

Mobile phones and consumer durables are the most bought categories across the country.

Young adults (between the ages of 19-23 years) constitute a large part of the Indian population and play an instrumental role in defining the trends in the country. The CRUST Survey for 2014-15 has taken an in-depth look into their behavioral pattern to find that 87 per cent of young adults stock goods. 51 per cent young adults sell used goods to upgrade to better products and lifestyle. 23 per cent of people in the age group of 19- 23 years bought three to five used goods last year.

CRUST included a qualitative research followed by a quantitative study across 16 cities in the country, covering three town classes - metros, tier I and tier II. The towns covered included Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Patna, Guwahati, Ahmedabad, Lucknow, Jaipur, Chandigarh, Indore, Kochi, Bhubaneswar and Pune. The product coverage in the sample study included, kitchen appliances, clothing, books, mobile phones/smartphones, home appliances, watches, baby & children products, bicycles/two-wheelers, furniture, musical instruments, camera, sporting goods, computers/laptops and cars/car accessories.

A random sampling methodology was used to identify the 5,800 samples across these 16 cities, using electoral rolls as a sample selection frame. From the electoral rolls, appropriate number of addresses, representing the starting points, were identified, ensuring randomness within a sample town, as well as geographic dispersion. The sample was spread across both males and females, in the age group of 18-60 years, belonging to SEC A/B/C households.

Pen and paper interviews were conducted, face-to-face, among the selected respondents. The entire process was done as per the rigorous data collection protocols of IMRB International.

OLX.in is a marketplace that brings sellers and buyers together for transactions. It offers a free, fast and hyper-local way for Indians to sell and buy used goods and services.