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This Kidswear brand aims to reach monthly sales of Rs 2 crore by expanding its portfolio with mother-centric products

Sumit Vishwakarma
New Update
Includ Founder & CEO

Includ Founder & CEO

India's ecommerce landscape is witnessing an extraordinary surge, reshaping the retail sector with its rapid expansion and widespread adoption across the nation. In the past two years alone, the digital marketplace has seen an unprecedented level of growth, with e-commerce penetration reaching nearly every pincode, signalling a transformative shift in consumer behaviour and shopping habits. 

This remarkable growth trajectory is underscored by the significant influx of private equity and venture capital funding, amounting to over $15.4 billion in 2022. Such financial endorsements highlight the robust confidence investors have in the potential and future prospects of the Indian ecommerce sector. 

Projections further illuminate this optimism, with forecasts indicating that the market size is poised to escalate to $111 billion by 2024, eventually soaring to a staggering $200 billion by 2026. Amidst this burgeoning ecommerce boom, a pivotal demographic shift is becoming increasingly evident—the rising influence of women, particularly mothers, in shaping the purchasing decisions of Indian households. 

This shift is not merely a trend but a reflection of deeper societal changes, where women are asserting greater control over household spending, especially in categories that directly impact the family's lifestyle and well-being. 


Despite the growing recognition of their pivotal role, the ecommerce market has yet to fully adapt and cater to the nuanced needs and preferences of this powerful consumer segment. Subcategories such as kidswear, womenswear, and home improvement, which traditionally see significant female influence, present a unique opportunity within the ecommerce space. 

Yet, the potential to tailor offerings and create platforms that resonate deeply with the preferences, values, and aspirations of women—especially those juggling the dual responsibilities of career and family—remains largely untapped. 

This gap in the market, coupled with the evolving role of women in the consumer economy, sets the stage for a targeted intervention. Recognizing the need for an ecommerce platform that not only understands but also prioritizes the modern woman's perspective.

Who is the founder?

Ashwin Rastogi, with his extensive background in investment and experience with fast fashion brands, founded Includ in April 2023.

Ashwin is a Bachelor of Engineering graduate from the Birla Institute of Technology and Science, Pilani. Prior to joining Includ, he served as the Country Director for Urbanic and the Country Manager for Club Factory. He has also worked at Eight Roads, Premji Invest, and J.P. Morgan.

Besides Rastogi, the founding team also includes Sumit Arora, who serves as the Chief Technology Officer (CTO). He has held several engineering roles in companies such as Shiprocket, Majid Al Futtaim, U2opia Mobile, and HP. In 2012, he founded his first venture, named Thinkcabs, and subsequently established Zappka Tech.

What does Includ do?

Situated in Gurugram, Includ is born out of a keen insight into the changing dynamics of Indian households, where women are increasingly at the forefront of financial and purchasing decisions. 

This understanding has led to the creation of a dedicated platform aimed at empowering women, particularly mothers, by offering an extensive and thoughtfully curated selection of children's apparel and eventually expanding into womenswear and home improvement products.

The startup aims to bridge the market gap by providing a shopping experience that aligns with the modern Indian woman's needs, preferences, and lifestyle, making fashion both accessible and relevant to her daily life.

Based in Gurugram, Includ is a testament to the growing recognition that women, particularly those balancing careers and family life, are increasingly becoming the primary decision-makers in their households. It serves the modern-day woman, offering an extensive selection of children's apparel for ages 2 to 14, encompassing over 5,500 styles. 

The brand's approach to affordability, with prices starting at just Rs 449, ensures that fashion is accessible to a wide audience without sacrificing style or quality. This strategic pricing model is particularly appealing in a market where value for money is a key consideration for consumers. 

The startup's early success in securing funding from a group of angel investors, including industry veterans like Shailesh Rao/ Includ's focus on kidswear is a strategic choice, driven by the segment's high purchase frequency and the aim to resonate with mothers in their late-20s to early-30s. 

This focus is not just about tapping into a market segment but about connecting with a demographic that is highly influential in household decisions and responsive to the latest trends and recommendations on social media platforms like Instagram.

Focusing on growing sales

With a team of 25 people, Includ is focusing on achieving monthly sales of up to Rs 2 crore and continuously working to expand its product range to keep pace with consumer demand. 

Despite the competitive landscape of the kidswear market, with established players like FirstCry setting a high benchmark, Includ is carving its niche by leveraging the diversity of its product range and the convenience of online shopping. The company's future ambitions include expanding into womenswear and home products, aiming to broaden its appeal and product offerings. 

Looking ahead, Rastogi envisions taking Includ beyond the digital marketplace into offline retail, starting with the kidswear category before branching into other areas.

This strategic expansion is buoyed by commitments from several large investors for fresh capital infusion, highlighting the market's confidence in Includ's growth trajectory and its adaptability in a dynamic environment. Includ's ambitions extend beyond dominating the Indian market to establishing a significant international presence, focusing on regions like the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) nations and Bangladesh. 

The brand's strategy of leveraging India, Bangladesh, and China as supply hubs while targeting key markets in the GCC, India, and Southeast Asia reflects a global outlook and a deep understanding of its core demographic.

The strategic vision positions Includ as a promising contender in the ecommerce space, poised to meet the evolving needs of the modern-day woman and her family, both in India and beyond.

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