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EPISODE P14 48 mins

TrueFacet: How Tirath is Building a ‘Controlled Marketplace’ Handling & Vetting Physical Products

Posted on 7th April 2017 , by Kunle Campbell


About the guests

Tirath Kamdar

Kunle Campbell

Tirath Kamdar, CEO and Co-Founder of TrueFacet, has over a decade of experience in the jewellery industry in retail and manufacturing. Prior to launching TrueFacet in May 2014, he spent over 5 years at top eCommerce companies including Groupon and Fab, where he led marketing. Kamdar has an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management.



TrueFacet is a New York-based online marketplace for authentic pre-owned designer watches and jewellery from the most luxury of brands like Cartier, Bulgari, Patek Philippe, and Van Cleef and Arpels.

Tirath Kamdar, CEO and Co-Founder of TrueFacet discusses how himself and his team are building a ‘controlled’ eCommerce marketplace for luxury physical products.

Tirath has over a decade of experience in the jewellery industry in retail and manufacturing, as well as comes from a family of jewellers.

Tirath went through TechStars Seattle, and just completed a $7 million dollar round of funding from Maveron and Joe Montana’s Liquid2Ventures (http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20160921005277/en/TrueFacet-Raises-6-Million-Series-Led-Maveron).

In this episode you will learn about:

  • How TrueFacet has had to blend elements of physical product online retail into a marketplace model i.e. they handle and vet products sold through their marketplace for authenticity
  • How vetting the authenticity of every single item sold through TrueFacet delivers customer satisfaction and marketplace trust
  • Marketplace chicken or egg situation: what did Triath’s growth marketing team chase first? Buyers or Sellers?
  • How Tirath organise sellers first before attracting buyers to TrueFacet
  • How TrueFacet found initial traction without any paid advertising.
  • How his team made use of Google Analytics to run a manual demographics study.
  • How they approached their customers and made sure that they are building trust between the buyers and sellers and the marketplace as a whole.
  • How to be strict and provide security while still giving your customers an incredible experience.
  • How to build trust and security with buyers and sellers.

Guest’s Top Tips

Tirath, recommends the following three steps to building a business.

  1. Solidify and make sure you have the most optimal user experience.
  2. Get some real partners – the ones around the table that really matter.
  3. Get some capital.

It is also important to build trust and provide security to your customers, that delivers the best experience possible.

He believes in deep data analysis, paired up with a personal approach customer service.

Parting Advice – The Lightning Round

Future Plans

He plans to keep on adding new features that will add liquidity to the marketplace.

Hiring People

He looks for passion and drive.

Indispensable Tools

  • Metrics Dashboard
  • Weekly meeting with team leaders
  • Spending time with his wife

Best Mistake

He underestimated growth, and they became overwhelmed.

Best Resources

Get the best mentors and investors. You want to make sure you have the right people around the table.

Key Takeaways (with timestamps)

(8:50) You have to have a strong and compelling customer value proposition that has proven out to be very clean and clear.

(9:10) Have that “one” product fit. You can have up to 6 or more at a time, but at least have one that really fits and concentrate on that.

(10:15) You can spend months building up what you think is the perfect eCommerce website or platform, and still don’t know if it will work. You won’t actually know until you get it out there and analyse user behaviour.

(11:35) You have to make sure that you are delivering a long term business with value. You can actually reach out to your users and ask.

(14:35) Traffic should be relevant, not traffic for the sake of having traffic.

(17:24) The number one thing in the marketplace is if you are able to control one side while you are building the other, then that is a gold mine. You just have to remember that you fully understand that side before you control it.

(23:15) It is about getting to know your investors before you take their money.

(24:35) In the first year, you will not be able to know how your mobile app should be, you need to understand user behaviour first.

(25:12) Remember that customer experience should always be your top priority.

(27:10) Based on the industry that you are in, you have to determine how much control you should have.

(35:20) There is so much content out there in the world right now and you have to really take your position based on your brand.

(44:40) You raise funding only because you know exactly what milestones you have. Lay it down, all your milestones for 1 month, 6 months, one year and so on. You want to raise a capital that will cover you and also provide a buffer.


About the host:

Kunle Campbell

An ecommerce advisor to ambitious, agile online retailers and funded ecommerce startups seeking exponentially sales growth through scalable customer acquisition, retention, conversion optimisation, product/market fit optimisation and customer referrals.

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