The other day I was having a real struggle when I wanted to gift shoes to my cousin who happens to be a size 12. After hours and hours of the tiresome quest, I realized that not many Indian Stores offer such sizes. That’s when I found the ‘Jupiter Shop’ by Dhruv Chadha which was a silver lining to my day. The Jupiter Shop tends to derive its name from the planet Jupiter which is known to be the largest of them all. The story behind JS is technically the story of the founder Dhruv, as he himself falls under the ‘oversized’ category. In school, Dhruv was always the odd one out because of his size-12 feet. He always awaited his relatives from the West eagerly as they would bring the clothes and goodies of his size. Fatefully, this anomaly led to a huge blow when Dhruv was 15. Dhruv was an ace football player, but could not play the finals as he did not have footwear in his size.
“I did not have the right footwear to play the game,” he recalls.
A management student from Mumbai’s Mithibai Motiram Kundnani College, Dhruv started Jupiter Shop as an online store in 2013. To start with, it partnered with Nike to import apparel and shoes in large sizes.
“Over 60 million people in India struggle to find their sizes as they are not found easily. Outsized people face these shortcomings on a regular basis. There are millions who are above the XL (extra-large) size and struggle to find the right size apparel or footwear. Retailers do not stock these sizes since they do not have a large footfall density and within the first two weeks of starting the Jupiter Shop, we ran out of stock,” he says.
Through his research, Dhruv found out that nine percent of the population falls under the ‘oversized’ category. After testing the waters, and observing the demand, Dhruv went on to partner with around 20 brands, including Asics, New Balance, and Crocs, among others. JS also sourced extra-large inventory from exporters in India that make clothes for the American and European markets. At that time, Jupiter Shop only had a backend warehouse to manage the stock for the e-commerce marketplace, but many people would turn up to try the clothes. This led Dhruv to open his first store in Mumbai in 2017.
“ People often visited the warehouse to try out the clothes. It is then that I realized that a brick-and-mortar store was necessary,” Dhruv says.
Thus Dhruv’s personal frustration paved the way to the “Big and Tall” e-commerce marketplace that helps outsized men find fashionable apparel and shoes in hard-to-find. The startup has been functioning actively since its inception in 2013, with Dhruv having invested Rs 6o Lakhs so far. Targeting mostly six-footers and large men, Jupiter Shop makes apparel from sizes XL to 9XL available, and shoes from sizes 11 to 15. According to the founder, the prices range anywhere between Rs 750 and Rs 20,000. The e-commerce startup has a customer base of more than 9,000 customers across the country, primarily from the metros. Its revenue model is that of an omni-channel retailer, and the startup has been recording a 30 percent year-on-year growth organically. Its customer retention rate is above 95 percent, Dhruv notes, adding that the annual revenue stands at Rs 1 crore currently. Currently, Jupiter Shop only has three team members. Besides himself, Dhruv has hired one person to look after the e-commerce business, and another as a merchandiser.
“Jupiter being the largest planet is symbolic to our purpose,” Dhruv quips.
In the near future, Dhruv is looking to acquire a national-level presence, starting with metro cities including Delhi and Bengaluru to cater to the needs of all the big guys throughout India.
I have already texted all my over-the-top tall friends about Jupiter Shop to help with their shopping woes, so what are you waiting for? Tell your big friends about the Jupiter Shop and help them out!