Mumbai-based Bootstrapped Paper Cup Advertising Startup CupShup Sets Rs 5 Cr Revenue Target for FY19

“We aim to drive Gupshup around brands over a cup of tea. Hence the name CupShup.” says Sanil Jain, co-founder, CupShup.

Mumbai-based CupShup which offers end-to-end services to its clients — from getting the cups manufactured and their distribution to tracking, monitoring and post campaign surveys to gauge the effectiveness of the campaign, is aiming to achieve a revenue target of Rs 5 Cr in FY’19. Started in November 2014 by Siddharth Singh and Sanil Jain, CupShup has done sales of over Rs 4.5 Cr since inception. The startup ended last financial year (FY 2017-18) with Rs 2.1 Cr in revenues.

“We aim to achieve 100% growth, both in our revenues and our network reach. We have set our revenue target of Rs 5 Cr in FY’19,” told Sanil Jain, co-founder, CupShup in an interaction with BW Disrupt.

From being an outcome of a simple idea of producing branding paper tea cups and winning several awards, including the Best Advertising Startup by Startup World Network, CupShup have served over 110 Clients which includes some of the biggest brands like Google, Amazon, Unilever, Uber, Ola, Kotak, ICICI, Coke, and also other startups such as FoodPanda, Byju's, Swiggy, EarlySalary, Clovia, PaySense and many others.

Sanil always had an inclination towards entrepreneurship since his college days. He always tried creating business prospect out of situations where he felt there was an opportunity. Even during his college days, he tried his hand at various things and made some profits albeit at a very small level. Thus, when Sidharth (CupShup’s other co-founder) came with this idea, it was natural for Sanil to take the plunge.

During his MBA, Sanil was having a cup of tea with batch mate, Sidharth Singh, at a Chai Tapri outside his college. Sidharth was working on an entrepreneurship project with few friends and was struggling to come up with a unique idea/product to present for his project. That’s where they found their Eureka Moment.

The idea dawned to Sidharth that what if they brand these plain paper cups and convert the tea breaks into discussion joints for brands. They chatted about movies, politics for about 15 mins. It came to their mind that they just spent 15 minutes of their quality time which was relaxed, clutter free and the environment was fun filled. This was a perfect place/medium where a brand would want to promote itself.

CupShup charges its clients on per lac unit basis for the end-to-end services right from creatives, campaign planning, cups printing, distribution, tracking, monitoring and post campaign surveys to gauge the effectiveness of the campaign. Average ticket size of its campaign is around Rs. 3 Lakhs.

Apart from Cup Branding, the startup claims that it has witnessed tremendous growth in its corporate activation services. Currently the company is doing more than 100 activations per month and are working with clients like FoodPanda, Byju’s, HSBC, and Kotak Securities among others Pan India. Corporate Activation is a unique offering of CupShup which allows you to target your target audience at their work place.

CupShup is bootstrapped so far. Both of its co-founders, have put an initial sum of Rs. 1 Lakh (2 Lakhs in total) which went towards hiring, Website Building etc.

“We have partnered with 4 of the largest cups manufacturing facilities in India to ensure our cups are of the highest quality. We do only flexo-printed cups, made out of water based ink and use ITC 190GSM paper. This has also resulted in some business loss for us in the early stages when few startups asked us to do offset cups which are much cheaper. However, we always ensured when the brand reaches the customer, the cups should be of the highest quality,” added Sanil.

CupShup is based out of Mumbai and has offices in Gurgaon, Bengaluru and Pune as well.

“More than 5 billion cups gets consumed in India every year. And we at CupShup see every plain/non-branded cup as a wasted opportunity for consumer engagement. Cups cater to different social sectors and have a wonderful advantage of comfortably placed in customer's hand for a good 5-7 minutes. Thus, through combination of proper segmentation of the market and relevant communication, we aim to establish Cups as a new medium for brands to interact with their customers,” stated Jain.

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