IRDAI Directs Insurers: Reduce D2C Commission, Launch Bima Sugam Platform

insurance news - d2cverse

The presence of intermediaries in the insurance market has led to an increase in the cost of insurance policies. This explains why the market regulator, SEBI, introduced direct mutual funds in 2013. 

Direct mutual funds enable individuals to purchase funds directly from the fund house, avoiding the need for a distributor. This helps to save a lot on the expense ratio.

In a similar vein, the insurance regulator, IRDAI, has proposed a shift towards direct insurance plans. Although direct insurance plans already exist, there is hardly any difference in the premium when buying it from the insurer directly or via an insurance agent.

To address this issue, IRDAI has directed insurers to reduce commission on D2C (direct-to-consumer) plans from April onwards. The industry is uncomfortable with this decision. However, a Bima Sugam platform is currently underway, which will be a marketplace for individuals to buy and compare insurance policies from different insurers.

So, what does “going direct” mean? An insurance agent is supposed to understand your insurance requirement and suggest policies accordingly. They are responsible for explaining all policy features, inclusions, and exclusions in the policy. They also assist in the claims process. The insurance company pays them some portion of the premium as commission.

But what if you do not need an agent? You can sign up on the insurer’s website and buy directly, paying the same premium as you would when buying from an agent. This is what IRDAI wants to address.

Among different distribution channels for general insurers, the direct sale channel contributed 25% to premium in FY22, second only to the broker channel at 35%. For the new business premium in life insurance, it was only 8%, as life insurance is dominated by individual brokers.

“Insurers keep the extra amount in D2C plans that they would have otherwise had to pay to agents. It is a welcome move by IRDAI and in the interest of the common man!” says Bhanushali, Co-Founder & CEO at 1 Finance.

However, Mahavir Chopra, Founder of Beshak, has a different view. “Insurers spend more on direct marketing per acquisition than through the variable commission they pay to the insurance agent. In effect, there is hardly any financial benefit that can be transferred today to the customer who is coming directly.”

While Digit Insurance does provide a slightly lower commission when policyholders buy directly from them, they have to incur related expenses on their own. “We have to maintain and attract leads to our website, which comes at a cost. Moreover, to ensure a seamless customer experience, insurers have to take additional efforts to build connections with direct customers. Both these factors are important in determining the pricing of insurance policies online,” says Adarsh Agarwal, Chief Distribution Officer, Digit Insurance.

So, should you go direct? Insurance is a complex product, and you may need support while buying the policy and when filing claims. This is not to say agents will be helpful all the time. There are plenty of stories where agents mis-sell or do not help in settling claims. You need trusted advisors. Alternatively, you may come in touch with Sebi-registered investment advisors who can help you with not only choosing the right insurance but also overall financial planning.

Meanwhile, IRDAI has announced its plans to simplify and digitize the insurance marketplace with Bima Sugam – an online platform for insurance. Not only can people buy directly from insurers, but they can also connect with agents online and buy through them.

The platform was supposed to go live from January 1 but is yet to see the light of the day. “From what we understand, this is in progress, and IRDAI is working towards launching the platform soon,” says Agarwal of Digit Insurance.

“The key offering of the Bima Sugam platform is the ability for customers to purchase both life and non-life insurance policies online, where customers will have access to a wide range of policies from multiple insurers, and they can easily compare and evaluate policies based on features, coverage, and pricing. The low acquisition cost is also expected to result in a lower premium,” he adds.

The platform will enable policyholders to file claims, renew their policies, or port to a different insurer. As you await the Bima Sugam platform, you should ask about the premium differential between the direct and agent-led plans. Pay commission only to deserving agents or avail discount on the premium.

GoKwik’s partner brands experience 40% to 160% increases in online sale

gokwik news - d2cverse

GoKwik, an e-commerce enabler, is taking steps to enhance the e-commerce performance of various brands by expanding its services. According to reports from ET Retail, partnering with the business has resulted in between 40% to 160% increases in online orders for brands such as Fablestreet, Neeman, and Boult Audio.
CEO and co-founder of GoKwik, Chirag Taneja, stated that “direct to consumer brands are forming the centre of it” in the trend of e-commerce brands experiencing growth. He further added that the growth of D2C is evident through the increase in transactions, deeper penetration in remote areas of India, and processing GMV.

One of the primary objectives of GoKwik is to minimise business losses due to returned items from cash on delivery orders. By achieving this goal, partner businesses can expand their cash on delivery services across India, which in turn attracts a wider range of customers.

GoKwik has received funding from US-based venture capital firm Sequoia Capital and was established in 2020 by Chirag Taneja, Ankush Talwar, and Vivek Bajpai. The company provides its services to over 250 brands, leveraging artificial intelligence to address merchant-first issues.

Delhivery is Investing in SaaS D2C Software Company Vinculum

delhivery news - d2cverse

Delhivery, India’s largest logistics provider, has announced that it will be making a strategic investment in Vinculum, a global software leader in omnichannel retailing. The investment is part of a two-stage deal that will allow Delhivery to increase its shareholding in the company in the future.

Vinculum is a software company that enables brands to take advantage of eCommerce and omnichannel retailing. It has grown into a leading SaaS company that works with over 400 brands in India, South East Asia, and the Middle East. This investment will strengthen Delhivery’s position as a leading fulfilment solutions provider in the Direct-to-Consumer (D2C) enterprise market.

The two companies plan to build a complete integrated stack that addresses the entire range of post-purchase needs of a D2C brand. The integration with Vinculum’s industry-leading Order Management System (OMS) will be a first-of-its-kind fully-integrated E2E offering.

Rajaganesh S, Head of Supply Chain Solutions at Delhivery, congratulated Vinculum on building a world-class product that enables omnichannel retailing for brands and retailers while also powering fulfilment capabilities of 3PLs and online marketplaces. He also stated that the strategic partnership with Vinculum strengthens Delhivery’s fulfilment solution to brands.

Wakefit Reports 30% YoY Growth with $825 Million Revenue in FY23

wakefit news

Wakefit, the leading direct-to-consumer provider of home and sleep solutions in India, has reported an impressive 30% YoY growth with a revenue of over $825 million during the fiscal year 2022-2023 (FY23). The company’s growth can be attributed to its expansion strategy, which involves opening 22 physical locations across 15 Indian cities, making its products more accessible to customers in metropolitan and tier-2 areas.
A significant portion of Wakefit’s monthly revenue comes from offline sales, which has helped the physical stores reach the $825 crore revenue in FY23. Wakefit plans to continue using its omnichannel strategy as a key growth accelerator and intends to launch approximately 100 outlets in the next three years.

Wakefit is eyeing future profitability and aims to surpass $1 billion in revenue in FY24. The company plans to achieve this goal by expanding its product offering and reaching a wider range of customers in terms of geography and demographics.

Chaitanya Ramalingegowda, director and co-founder of Wakefit, expressed his satisfaction with the 30% YoY growth in sales, saying, “It is a testament to the immense satisfaction people have found in our products, and we look forward to serving them even better this year.” Ankit Garg, CEO and co-founder of Wakefit, added, “This growth has been possible due to the continued support our customers have shown us. This year, our focus will be on pursuing our goal to become a market leader in the home and sleep solutions category.”

Eli Bitton Enters Indian Market with Flagship Store in Delhi

Luxury fashion house Eli Bitton opened its first store in India in West Delhi in March 2023. The brand has decided to take the collaboration path to expand in India rather than opening company-owned exclusive stores. Yehuda Bitton, COO & Fashion Designer at Eli Bitton, stated that India is a familiar market for the brand, which used to work with a chosen fashion houses in India for fabrics before the pandemic.
However, the pandemic led to the brand directly entering the Indian market. The fashion house that the brand used to collaborate with couldn’t recover after the second wave. Therefore, the brand decided to launch its own fashion house in Delhi instead of collaborating with other houses.

The newly-opened store features a vast collection of ready-to-wear embroidered gowns, lehengas, and assorted clothing available in all sizes. Several Indian celebrities, including Sunny Leone, Shweta Tiwari, Nimrit Kaur Ahluwalia, and more, have worn Eli Bitton’s designs.

Eli Bitton chose West Patel Nagar over other localities in Delhi. Because this location is famous for designer stores because it offers the kind of space the brand needed and has latent potential.
Eli Bitton needed enough space to showcase its premium collection properly.
First, the brand launched D2C services in India to test out the tractive response. Satisfied by the experiment, the brand decided to set up shop in New Delhi. When they came to India, they saw that it was different from their expectations, and people wanted luxury fashion.

“In the short time, we had around 5-6 clients who flew down from other states just to get their hands on our exquisite collection,” said Bitton, who was happy with the response the brand was receiving in the country. Bitton also emphasised that – “The majority of our clients are repeat customers who purchased online or those who follow us on social media and have been anticipating the store’s launch. The most satisfying aspect is that 90% of the women who tried our designs purchased them.”

Apart from India, Eli Bitton has fashion houses in Haifa, Israel, where it has been present for the last three decades.

Rattanindia Sees 7% Jump with Neobrands Launch

Rattanindia Enterprises Ltd’s wholly-owned subsidiary, Neobrands Limited, has launched a new direct-to-consumer (D2C) fashion brand, causing the company’s shares to soar by over 7 percent in morning trade on April 19. The new venture will offer fashionable and high-quality clothing at affordable prices to India’s expanding fashion and apparel market, targeting young consumers. Neobrands Limited aims to become a hub for several brands in the fashion industry, with plans to introduce its labels exclusively through digital platforms during the initial phase, before expanding retail presence across the nation. This step aligns with the company’s goal to scale up its business while retaining its digital focus. Anjali Nashier Rattan, Business Chairperson of RattanIndia Enterprises, expressed confidence in the new venture, saying that their brands are poised to capture the market opportunity by offering affordable clothing options for men and women.

At 10.21 am, Rattanindia’s stock opened at Rs 40.44 on BSE, +4.74 percent from last close, after hitting a peak of Rs 41.42. The Indian fashion industry is seeing fantastic growth trends, especially in the D2C domain, with a huge demand for trendy and premium quality brands

RAS Luxury Oils Accelerates $1.5M Fundraiser with Burgeon Law

D2Cverse news - RAS Luxury Oils Accelerates $1.5M Fundraiser with Burgeon Law.

RAS Luxury Oils , a direct-to-consumer luxury skincare brand, has recently announced its successful fundraising round of approximately ₹12.3 crores ($1.5 million) from New York-based sustainability-focused venture capital firm Green Frontier Capital and other existing investors. The company intends to utilize the funds to ramp up hiring at its offices in Raipur and Mumbai and strengthen its brand presence by partnering with relevant channels. This move indicates the company’s commitment to expanding its operations and targeting a discerning global audience.

RAS Luxury Oils has been making waves in the beauty industry with its high-quality, natural skin care products that cater to the needs of modern consumers. The brand has already established a strong foothold in the Indian market and is now looking to expand its reach globally. With the recent funding round, the company has the resources to take its mission to the next level and transform the global beauty industry.

The fundraising deal was advised by Burgeon Law, a leading law firm known for its expertise in corporate law and transactional matters. The transaction team consisted of Abhisshek Singlla (Associate Partner), Pranav Rao (Associate), Soumya Tantia (Associate), and Mishthi Seth (Associate). With their support, RAS Luxury Oils secured the funding it needed to achieve its goals.

Overall, the latest fundraising round is a significant milestone for RAS Luxury Oils and a testament to its commitment to sustainable skincare practices. As the company continues to grow and expand its operations, it aims to positively impact the beauty industry and empower consumers to make informed choices about their skincare routines.

ARMOUR HEAVY a performance wear brand recently raised Rs 1.6 crore by India Accelerator

D2Cverse news: ARMOUR HEAVY a performance wear brand recently raised Rs 1.6 crore by India Accelerator

ARMOUR HEAVY (AH), a performance wear brand, recently secured Rs 1.6 crore in pre-seed funding led by India Accelerator. Based in Delhi-NCR, the company is known for its tough yet graceful designs, reflected in its tagline “Stop at Nothing”. AH aims to be a pure-play D2C (direct-to-consumer) brand and currently operates through its state-of-the-art eCommerce marketplace.

Founded by Captain Rahul Rai in January 2021, AH aims to offer high-fashion clothing made with high-performance materials that provide comfort, dimensional stability, and unique attributes to enhance wearer performance. The company plans to use the funds to enhance its operations and expand its online reach, as well as further research and develop high-end performance clothing.

Abhay Chawla, the founding partner and COO of India Accelerator, commented on the investment decision, stating, “The performance wear market is highly dominated by Western culture or international brands. We are thrilled to have come across Armour Heavy – a brand that has what it takes to be aspirational with the discipline and dedication of a military veteran at its helm. We are confident about its business plans and look forward to the brand making strides in the Indian market.”

Rahul Rai, the founder, and COO of Armour Heavy, stated, “The term Armour Heavy is military in origin that means the undefeatable! It is with the same spirit with which we are building AH. These are founding years and there is a lot of ground to cover. The satisfying part is that all is going as planned. We are proud that our investors have bestowed their trust in us and now building AH is a common vision of the many who are invested with us.”

AH was a finalist in India’s top investor tanks, Horses Stable Season 4 and Shark Tank India Season 1. It has also been recognized by Indian Achievers Forum and CEO Insights Magazine as one of the ten best leaders in fashion startups in 2022.

Anko to Enter Indian Market with Partnership

Anko to Enter Indian Market with Partnership - D2Cverse news

Anko, a leading home and living products brand, has announced its plans to launch in India through digital channels in collaboration with This strategic move will allow Anko to offer its carefully curated range of products to customers across the country.

Currently, offers a select range of Anko products in various categories such as home, furniture, kitchen, decor, and more. However, the brand aims to expand its product range in the coming months.

Ian Bailey, MD of Kmart Group, expressed his enthusiasm for this venture, stating that Anko is well-equipped to capture the attention of Indian consumers who desire high-quality products at affordable prices. Furthermore, Arjun Puri, Director of Anko, is excited to bring the brand’s selection of affordable and high-quality products to the Indian market via and The direct sourcing model of Anko is based on ethical and sustainable practices, ensuring that customers in India will appreciate the value and quality of their products.

Anko has a long-term vision to win over Indian customers, and the brand has already sold over 800 million products in 2022 across 300 stores in Australia, New Zealand, and other global markets. Anko’s established supplier base in Asia allows it to source products at volume.

John Southwell, Australia’s Trade and Investment Commissioner for food, agriculture, and consumer goods in India, welcomed Anko’s entry into the Indian market through John sees this as an opportunity for bilateral commerce synergies between the two countries. He also notes that Anko’s products are made in India and exported worldwide, providing economic returns to both countries. This is a testament to the strong trade and investment relationship between Australia and India.

Overall, Anko’s entry into the Indian market through is a significant milestone for both countries, and Anko is looking forward to serving customers across India with its range of affordable, high-quality home and living products.


Pilgrim Announces Yami Gautam as Hair Care Range Ambassador

Pilgrim Announces Yami Gautam as Hair Care Range Ambassador: D2Cverse news

Pilgrim, a toxin-free personal care brand, has announced Yami Gautam as its first-ever hair care range ambassador. The captivating partnership was announced through a powerful TVC and digital campaign, #PilgrimNeDhoondNikaale.

The campaign aims to emphasize Pilgrim’s promise to provide efficacious solutions for consumers’ personal care concerns. With this partnership, the brand seeks to amplify the power of concern-oriented personal care.

Pilgrim’s hair care range includes a variety of popular products, such as the best-selling Hair Growth Serum, Argan Oil Hair Mask, and Sulphate-free Shampoo. The brand’s Korean range, which was launched in May 2020, has been a significant success.

The quirky #PilgrimNeDhoondNikale campaign video features Yami being questioned by curious Korean natives about the secrets behind her luscious locks. Yami then reveals that Pilgrim has discovered these secrets and shares the secret, i.e., the Korean Hair Growth Serum, with the fascinated natives. The personal care brand sources these hair care secrets from Jeju Island in South Korea.

Anurag Kedia, Co-founder, and CEO, Pilgrim said, “Pilgrim is on an upward curve, continuously gaining consumer trust with our highly efficacious products made with world ingredients. Yami’s belief in the power of concern-oriented personal care products just made her the perfect fit for us and it aligns with what we stand for. Our association with Yami marks an exciting chapter for us as we continue our growth journey in 2023 and beyond.”

Konark Gaur, Chief Marketing and Commercial Officer, Pilgrim said, “Our core brand philosophy at Pilgrim is about being deeply consumer-centric and we are passionate about discovering the best ingredients from around the world to offer the best to the Indian consumer. That’s what differentiates us from the other brands. We are excited to amplify our message on multiple digital and traditional mediums, which we are confident will make us the first choice for haircare for millennials and Gen-Z across India.”

Pilgrim is focused on strengthening its research and development ability while building new, innovative product offerings for consumers across the country. The beauty and personal care brand witnessed massive growth in the last 12 months, crossing the ARR 150 crore mark with 6X growth in sales and revenue.