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New Delhi, 19 August, 2016: In a move to amplify the entrepreneurial spirit amongst SMEs and local merchants throughout the country, ShopClues, India’s first and largest managed marketplace recently organised the third phase of ShopClues’ Next Big e-Preneur Challenge. Announced in October 2015, ShopClues’ Next Big e-Preneur Challenge is a platform to enable budding and established entrepreneurs to showcase their business ideas, brainstorm over them with leading entrepreneurs of the country, and receive feedback. The shortlisted participants were invited for the final event at The Westin, Gurgaon in order to present their ideas to the founding team. Ornativa, a fashion jewellery start-up, won the award for the Next Big E-commerce Idea. Ornativa is jewellery brand designed to become the market leader in Web based sales of unique designer fashion jewellery, accessories with a strong focus on quality, affordability & reach.

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The first runners up of the event were Pepper Agro, an urban gardening and agriculture venture, launched by Titus John and Sunimol John and Glam Studio, a brand of technology driven affordable salons founded by Sadiya Naseem; followed by Scrapify, a start-up that aims to make scrap selling transparent and hassle-free, founded by ­­­­­Arihant Karnawat. The winners were also awarded with ShopClues – UpGrad Entrepreneur Scholarships in association with UpGrad, India’s leading industry-centric e-learning platform.

ShopClues’ Next Big e-Preneur Challenge was divided into three phases. The initial phase attracted a total of 1000 entries from 40 cities across India. A manifestation of ShopClues’ overpowering reach in tier II and tier III geographies, a majority of the entries received by ShopClues were from these areas. Out of the initial entries, 199 were shortlisted during the second phase of the competition after an in-depth analysis of the detailed business plans shared by each participant from different segments. Each segment catered to selling unique products and introducing new e-commerce models/marketplaces, including online services, customised clothing, healthcare and financial services etc.

The judges for the event were Sandeep Aggarwal, Founder of Shopclues and, Vishal Sharma, VP – Operations at ShopClues and Abha Bakaya, Senior Anchor and Editor at BTVi, India.

Sandeep Aggarwal founded and perceived the idea of Shopclues in 2011 at his home in Silicon Valley. Shopclues became India’s first and largest ecommerce marketplace with half a million merchants and more than 100 million monthly visitors on its website. The company is run by co-founders Sanjay Sethi & Radhika Aggarwal and an energetic team of over 1000 people.

Keeping his spirit of Serial Entrepreneurship alive, Sandeep founded another marketplace in 2014 called Droom, India’s first online and fully transactional marketplace to buy & sell cars, bikes, scooters, superbikes, supercars, vintage cars, vintage scooters, bicycles etc. He is responsible for developing the overall product and platform for Droom besides designing strategy, defining overall vision and building a true Silicon Valley style start-up culture in the company.

Anchor and Editor with BTVi, India, Abha Bakaya is the face of BTVi India has over decade of experience in Television journalism. Abha is popular name in the entrepreneur community with her widely known show “Rising Stars” which is a flagship property of the channel. Rising Stars features upcoming entrepreneurs of start-up world and showcases their journey.

Sandeep Aggarwal, Founder of ShopClues and Droom, said, “The kind of ideas and novel concepts that we have come across during the ‘Next Big e-Preneur Challenge’ have been truly exceptional and overwhelming. It’s indeed heartening to see that the next clutch of entrepreneurs in India are really pushing the envelope of innovation and are also carefully looking at execution and profitability. I believe that challenges such as these are an ideal way to encourage fresh approach and help bolster the enthusiasm that is already present in India’s start-up world.”

Sanjay Sethi, Co-Founder and CEO, ShopClues, added, “We are pleased to reach the concluding juncture of our Next Big e-Preneur Challenge. As one of the most significant and game-changing e-commerce ventures in India, we believe it is our onus to give entrepreneurship in the country a boost. All the entries we received were promising in their own way, and they made it apparent that the Indian business eco-system as a whole is moving towards a more vibrant, innovative and solution-centric future.”

Abha Bakaya, Senior Anchor and Editor at Bloomberg TV, India said, “The environment has become much more competitive and one needs to possess substantial ideas in hand to have an edge over others. Events like these are a part of the process of getting the right exposure to explore, express and understand where you belong in the startup community.”

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