Hero Group-owned Qubo promises to change Indian houses with smart devices like indoor cameras and smoke sensors that can be controlled by a smartphone app.
Imagine a smartphone camera capturing the identity of a doorbell ringer. What if you hit another car while driving? Dash camera footage is best for insurance claims.
Imagine a smartphone app controlling both devices. Qubo seeks smarter, safer, and networked smart home products.
In 2018, Hero Electronix, the consumer technology branch of Hero Group, launched Gurugram-based Qubo to sell smart home gadgets to Indian homes who demand improved security and modern aesthetics.
Qubo, the leading smart home and devices startup in the country, offers over 30 products by its 100-member team, including doorbells, indoor cameras, smoke sensors, and automotive dash cams, according to Nikhil Rajpal, CEO of Hero Electronix. Rajpal was an Everest Group and EY-Parthenon consultant.
“All of Qubo’s products are interconnected and can be controlled remotely through the smartphone app,” Rajpal tells YourStory. He says that most Indian families are safe and theft-proof, but rising violence and crime have necessitated increased protection.
Smart home appliances are offered by Google, Apple, Philips, Wipro, and Zebronics, indicating a large market in India. India and Japan are the two most profitable markets for home automation devices, which Future Market Insights believes will be worth $58 billion in 2023.
Rajpal thinks Qubo’s smartphone app stands out since it integrates all its offerings. Since it’s easier to track all devices in one spot, many consumers have tried other goods, he adds.
According to Rajpal, industry observers worried that Hero Electronix would struggle to develop hardware in India when it started making smart home devices.
India still imports semiconductors and other raw ingredients, and perfecting the supply chain would take years.
Despite three years of study, Qubo’s first product—a smart camera with Alexa and a home hub—failed. “The most important lesson we learned is to strengthen the technology behind the devices to make it fool-proof and reliable,” Rajpal says.
Through three production locations in Bengaluru, Noida, and Tirupati, Qubo designs and controls its global components.
Rajpal said Qubo’s software, app, and cloud are built in-house for end-to-end data protection.
Qubo’s end-to-end home security gadgets cost Rs 2,500 and generate 65% of its income through Amazon, Flipkart, and its website. Its presence at over 1,500 offline convenience and hardware stores attracts customers who want to touch and feel the product before buying.
Rajpal said the Hero Group-owned company ships over 40,000 products per month with an average ticket worth of Rs 5,000.
Growth and expansion
The startup earns Rs 10 crore per month and has tripled its sales in two years.
The company takes 18-24 months to study and create Indian-market-specific products and has nearly 30 in the pipeline.
“We build to scale. We may not provide deep savings, but our clients love exploring new things. Rajpal believes we will make more money at a larger scale.
Hero Electronix invested Rs 200 crore in Qubo, which forecasts a Rs 200 crore annual run rate by year’s end. Rajpal believes the milestone could attract a new investor with new funds.
Hero Group-owned Qubo has created a smartphone app to operate smart gadgets like indoor cameras and smoke sensors to change Indian households. Qubo, launched by Hero Electronix, sells over 30 doorbells, indoor cameras, smoke sensors, and automotive dash cameras. The largest smart home and gadgets company in India, the 100-person team offers over 30 products. For end-to-end data security, Qubo uses global and in-house components. Nearly 30 products are in development and 65% of revenue comes from online sources. Hero Electronix invested Rs 200 crore in Qubo, with a Rs 200 crore annual run rate at year’s end.