Peepul Tree Raises Rs 50 Crore In Seed Funding

The Bengaluru-based platform will use the funds to onboard 1,000 content creators to sell small-batch, locally-made products.

Peepul Tree Raises Rs 50 Crore In Seed Funding

Peepul Tree has raised $6 million (about Rs 50 crore) in seed funding led by Elevar Equity.

The Bengaluru-based live commerce platform will use the funds to onboard around 1,000 content creators by the end of the year so as to market and sell small-batch products made by India's artisanal communities.

Founder Anish Williams told BQ Prime that his startup aims to create a new market linkage between the "vast demand for bespoke, sustainable products" and India's handicraft makers. "There's a large market here, but the linkage is happening via export houses currently."

Williams said that there are two problems with this: the artisans don't get paid fairly, and the stories behind India's products are compromised.

"Peepul Tree will tap into this massively underserved supply chain and enable the creation of a global brand presence for Indian artisans," the company said in a press release. "This will be driven by the creator economy along with storytelling powered by Live History India, Peepul Tree's content arm."

Besides Elevar Equity, the company has been backed by early-stage angel investors such as Enam Securities' Vallbabh Bhansali, Haitong Securities' Vivek Shah and Cyrus Guzder, among others.

To dive deeper, Peepul Tree will onboard content creators and influencers to help narrate the story of a particular community. "The community will then develop an exclusive product for the creator. The product won’t have an MRP, and the content creator will decide what it can be sold at to their audience. Whatever it is sold, will be equitably divided between the content creator and the artisan," Williams said, explaining the two-way proposition on a phone call.

He added that currently, the onboarding of content creators is by invite only. "They have to meet 5-10 parameters. We look at historians, yoga influencers and other creators to tell stories."

He added that they are also going to international creators now, having already onboarded four. "Initially we were working only with Indian creators, but the long-term goal is to have content creators from every market. There's a larger pool of buyers outside of India. "

Williams added that in the first phase of Peepul Tree, they will be tapping into the organic social media following that the creators have developed. "When we get big, we’ll get them to do content for us on our platform."

The startup was founded in 2022 by Anish Williams, Mini Menon and Priya Jayaraman.