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August 06, 2015

Justdial's Mani on Making Real Money Online

In an interview to Mint, local search firm Justdial's founder VSS Mani talks about building an Internet business that actually charges customers enough money to make an actual positive bottom line :
It would be fair to say that Mani comes across as a contrarian; one who doesn’t believe in the view that an e-commerce business must lose money. “JD did Rs.600 crore of revenue last year. That is equivalent to roughly Rs.60,000 crore revenue of an e-commerce company in terms of GMV,” he says. Gross merchandise value, or GMV, is a term used in online retailing to indicate total sales of merchandise through a particular marketplace over a certain time frame. "Commerce means making money. You cannot have deep discounts; you cannot buy things for Rs.100 and sell at Rs.80. Or (give) cash back." 
..."we are extremely worried about the way things are,” says Mani. “Today we have the talent pool. In the dotcom days, it was a big challenge. People used to join organizations at double or triple the salary. It is another matter they all lost their jobs in the next six months. They all quit big companies to join Internet companies and most of the time they used to while away in the canteen thinking of all kinds of domain names. That is exactly what is happening today. People are flirting with apps. It doesn’t work like that.”
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