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Three out of Four Urban Indians Stock Unwanted Gifts: OLX Survey

Re-gifting on rise, one-fifth of all unwanted gifts are passed on

iInfograph finalDelhi, November 26th 2014: If you’re sitting on a pile of Diwali gifts that are of no use to you, and wondering what you can do with them then you might take solace in the fact that there are many others like you. Of the people who receive gifts in urban India, one out of every six receives gifts that are of no use to them. Across India, the lowest incidence of book gifting happens in Delhi, Ahmedabad, and Indore. This and more was revealed by the Gift Me Not survey done by OLX, the number one marketplace for used goods in India, and IMRB International, a leading market research and consultancy firm.

The survey defines unwanted gifts as the ones that the user doesn’t like or find useful. The predominant attitude towards these gifts according to the survey results is that of stocking them with three out of four receivers of unwanted gifts resorting to this behavior. This was followed by 20% who said they re-gift their unwanted gifts, 9% who claimed to give it to charity, 3% who said they sell the gifts they don’t like, and 1% who admitted to throwing them away. The survey puts the estimated volume of unwanted gifts in urban Indian households at 3.6 Crore.

Indians are also increasingly re-gifting the gifts rejected by them, which OLX likes to call Omnipresent because of their ubiquitous presence. The survey respondents said that they re-gift one in every five unwanted gifts they receive. Interestingly, while only 20% of the unwanted gifts are re-gifted, the survey respondents perceived 27% of the gifts (1 crore of 3.6 crore) given to them to be re-gifted.

Said Amarjit Batra, CEO, OLX, “The rules of socialization have dramatically changed in urban India in recent times, and this reflects in the gifting patterns. People are spending less time thinking of other’s needs and likes. Personal touch is fast
disappearing from relationships, and this explains the high re-gifting, and an even higher perceived re-gifting. ”

tips while shop online“OLX has coined the word Brown Money for the money hidden in unused goods – money that has emerged from the dust gathered on the unused goods, hence the word brown. If each unwanted gift is for an average price of INR 100 per piece, then total monetary value of the unwanted gifts market stands at INR 360 Crore in urban India. At INR 1000 a piece on an average it gets pegged at INR 3600 Crore. Re-gifting is a lazy option. It’s preferable to sell unwanted gifts to get cash for buying meaningful gifts or donating the money to a social cause,” added Amarjit Batra.

The Most Unwanted

Of the 3.6 crore unwanted gifts, clothing and crockery/kitchen utensils constitute the gifts most unwanted. These categories were followed by toys, showpieces, books, personal items, utility items, gift vouchers/cards, electronic items, food and beverages, bed sheets and linen.


The study was conducted by IMRB International across 16 cities across the four regions of the country. The research surveyed about 5300 consumers, chosen randomly across the age group of 19-60 years. The sample was a mix of users who regularly and not so frequently indulge in receiving and re-gifting unwanted gift items.

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