This month, Swedish fashion retailer Chiquelle won the Global E-commerce Award at this year’s Global E-commerce Summit. The company’s pitch won 52 percent of the audience vote, thereby beating Indian online grocery store Big Basket and Swedish furniture manufacturer Ikea. We interviewed CEO and co-founder Pouya Boland about the award and the latest developments, including expanding to more countries.
Every year, the pan-European ecommerce association Ecommerce Europe hosts the Global E-commerce Summit. One of the highlights handing out the annual awards, which recognize and celebrate outstanding brands and retailers. During this year’s edition, the awards were presented in two categories: the Global E-commerce Awards and the European Entrepreneurial Awards.
The Entrepreneurial Award was won by Chabla, which connects the deaf and interpreters for global communication, while Chiquelle went home with the Global E-commerce Awards. “It’s amazing what we have achieved since we started five years ago. In terms of sales, we have gone from zero to millions, while winning awards”, CEO and co-founder Pouya Boland tells us. “The Global E-commerce Award is already our sixth award that we’ve won.”
Two years ago, Ecommerce News wrote about how Chiquelle is ready to conquer Europe. Winning a European award, which Pouya describes as the world cup of ecommerce awards, seems like a clear prove Chiquelle is indeed ready to conquer Europe. The company started in Sweden, went to Norway and last year, it launched in both Finland and Germany. “It has been going amazingly well, without even putting a lot of time and energy in it. Just imagine if we went all-in”, he says.
Relaunching in the Netherlands
When we spoke Pouya two years ago, he was talking about relaunching in the Netherlands soon. But as of today, there is still no dedicated Dutch website. “That’s true, but we are planning to launch in the Netherlands again after the summer and make it the number one country of Chiquelle, in terms of most orders and sales. Well, after Sweden of course”, he says. “We have done a lot, behind the scenes, to prepare a big entree and get in the top of the market within a short time. We don’t like to do things half way or not perfect, so we’ve decided to wait a bit longer and launch as an explosion.”
Investing in warehouses, offices and employees
Chiquelle has plans to expand to six countries after the summer, with dedicated languages and local payments. “The Netherlands is of course one of them, but unfortunately I can’t reveal the other five countries yet.” Luckily for us, he wanted to share some other developments. “After winning six awards in total and three of them within four weeks, and after growing so fast, we are heavily investing in expanding, with bigger warehouses, buildings, offices, design and production houses and employees. The plan is to bring in two to three new employees every two weeks from now on.”, he says. “Great things are waiting for us. We prepared years and years for this moment, and now it’s the right time to expand as no one did before.”