07 May 2019, India:
Venture Catalysts has invested in Kolkata-based souvenir brand Rare Planet.
The startup will use the fresh capital to strengthen its team and create a strong Pan-India brand identity. The startup will also use the funds raised for establishing a strong national identity.
The financial details have not been disclosed yet.
Rare Planet aims to empower local artisans through financial self-reliance and exposure to national and international markets.
Dr. Apoorv Ranjan Sharma, Co-founder and President, Venture Catalysts remarked, “At Venture Catalysts, we have always adhered to our mission of identifying and supporting ventures that show a high potential of emerging in and filling the need-gap of India and Bharat. The travel retail industry for souvenirs itself is as big as INR 5000 crores at present in India. Amidst such a fast-emerging segment, we believe that Rare Planet has the potential to disrupt the market with its noble and distinctive vision of facilitating and empowering the local talent.”
Dr. Apoorv Ranjan Sharma, added, “Being one of the only brands in the niche segment of local craftsmen created souvenirs, Rare Planet is paving its way to become one of the most premium artisan-supportive souvenir brands in the country. With this investment, we look forward to witnessing major developments in this domain.”
Ranodeep Saha, Founder, Rare Planet, said, “When I started Rare Planet five years back, the basic idea was to help artisans create world-class products and make them available online. Over the period, I realized that merely creating a website and selling products through the same will not be enough, and the whole idea gradually changed to us venturing into various retail segments.”
Ranodeep Saha, added, “Today, we have more than 500 artisans onboard who have been empowered by Rare Planet’s operational model. With the current funding, we would like to grow our team to reach out to more such communities and bring rare, beautiful and unique traditional art to a larger audience.”
Ranodeep Saha further added, “I would like to wholeheartedly express my gratitude towards Apoorv Sir and his whole team, especially Vansh Oberoi, who helped me beyond their corporate roles and groomed me to achieve the best out of the current investment round. With the funds raised, we envision to build a strong team, create a strong identity throughout the country, and explore the high-potent export market for souvenirs. Moreover, we are also eyeing retail markets in a few South East Asian countries and the USA. Through Rare Planet, I hope we are able to contribute substantially towards establishing India as one of the key players in the USD 5 billion worth global souvenir industry.”
Rare Planet was founded by Ranodeep Saha in 2014. It is souvenir brand. It sells items crafted by local artisans from all over the country. It has a small dedicated team of NIFT designers directly working with artisans from remote areas to modify existing traditional items and add to their appeal.
The startup aims at creating a strong independent self-sustained artisan force of 1 million by 2024.
(Image – Rare Planet)