Namah Chawla

“Lenskart will be a functional brand on Amazon and a lifestyle brand on Myntra”: Madhur Acharya

The eyewear brand is now available on platforms like Nykaa, Myntra, Amazon, etc. A chat with its VP e-commerce marketplaces.

Eyewear retailer Lenskart is expanding its online presence. Now, all the brands under Lenskart’s umbrella like Lenskart Blu, John Jacobs, Vincent Chase, Hooper, Fossil and Aqualens, will also be available on platforms like Amazon, Nykaa, Myntra and TATA CLiQ. As per media reports, Lenskart recently closed a $100 million funding round, and there are talks of another $250 million in funding.

During a conversation with afaqs!, Madhur Acharya, VP e-commerce marketplaces, Lenskart, talks about how being on various online platforms, will benefit the brand. Acharya also mentions about the competition, major challenges of the eyewear category, among other things.

Edited Exerpts:

Why did you decide to launch Lenskart on other e-commerce platforms?

Lenskart is planning to bring a new perspective to capture e-commerce customers. We have already made a mark on the retail business front. Now, it is time to focus more on digital.

We host different brands like Lenskart Air, John Jacobs, Vincent Chase, etc. Online marketplaces get more intent-based customers and with this move we are creating a strong strategy to engage on that front.

As per our study, the e-commerce channel for the category has been growing massively and intent to buy on marketplaces has improved since the beginning of the pandemic. So, our focus is to be present across all channels.

How will this be executed? Will prescription glasses also be sold via e-commerce?

It all depends on the platform. For example, while Myntra is mostly known for fashion, Flipkart/Amazon are mainly known for electronics. We have a different strategy for each of these platforms. So, Lenskart will be a functional brand on Amazon and a lifestyle brand on Myntra.

India has a big market for prescription glasses and we aren’t ignoring it. It is one of our priorities right now. We are in talks with various platforms, as it requires a lot of operational work. We want to ensure that the consumer experience is seamless.

On the Lenskart app, one can try glasses through the ‘3D Try On’ feature. Will this feature also be available on other e-commerce platforms?

This feature is already live on platforms such as Tata CLiQ. We are currently in talks with other platforms too. Artificial intelligence is the way forward, and such tools enhance a customer’s experience, while also enabling him to make better choices.

What are the main challenges in the eyewear category?

In India, there exists lack of awareness about the category. Offline stores are not that visible. This issue can be solved online. Digital brands can reach out to a larger audience.

What is Lenskart doing differently to stay ahead of the competition, both from the unorganised sector and other affordable brands?

When you compare us with the unorganised market, you will realise that we offer the consumers good quality and service, and ease of buying. The digital space allows us to penetrate smaller towns and cities. The unorganised market can’t possibly offer the wide range available on our app.

To differentiate ourselves from other brands, we try to educate our consumers on why we are better. We provide adequate information about the quality of lenses and frames. Our data analysis and understanding also helps us to stay ahead of the competition.

Are you planning to add more private label brands and opt for a house of brands strategy, as you grow?

It’s definitely part of our plan. We already have some brands in our pocket. The plan is to grow our business extensively first, before introducing more brands.

There are two different things. One is necessity, which is your prescription glasses. The task is to make them more comfortable or glamorous for the consumer. Then, there are the sunglasses that are a part of fashion accessories. You should be able to choose your eyewear as per your outfit.

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