In late May, when eyewear retailer Lenskart opened store number 500 in India—this one in Bengaluru—it was a mark of how far the company had come. Started in 2010 by co-founders Peyush Bansal, Sumeet Kapahi and Amit Chaudhary, it was originally an online-only platform selling contact lenses.
The online space continues to be the company’s primary driver, contributing to 65-70% of Lenskart’s overall revenues, according to CEO Bansal. However, it is now only part of the behemoth that Lenskart has grown into.
Today, Lenskart’s shadow looms large over the entire Indian eyewear ecosystem; its stores dot the landscapes of 100 Indian cities, providing free eye-checkups as well.
Glasses on, Lenskart takes a closer look at rural India
Flush with 'likely' SoftBank funds, Lenskart—present in 100 Indian cities with over 500 stores—is eyeing remote corners of the country. With an omnichannel approach, affordable private labels, and an ambition to become the “Maruti Suzuki” of eyecare, the eyewear company might even have an Israeli card up its sleeve
If reports are to be believed, Lenskart is primed to enter the unicorn club
But even with rising revenues and falling losses, the eyewear retailer still has a "minuscule" market share
Even as it bolsters its tech and continues to expand its physical retail chain, Lenskart is also sizing up the opportunity in more rural markets
While this poses its own issues, Lenskart is hoping its journey so far has prepped it for what lies ahead