Grocery startup BigBasket becomes India’s newest unicorn with new $150M investment1 year ago Bhavitaavya Dharanikota
Supermarket Grocery Supplies Pvt (SGSPL), which owns and operates BigBasket, has raised $150 million from Mirae Asset-Naver Asia Growth Fund, CDC Group and existing investor Alibaba Group. The round was led by Mirae Asset-Naver Asia Growth Fund through one of its funds and it marks the group’s largest investment in India. Mirae Asset-Naver Asia Growth Fund is a joint venture between Seoul-based Mirae Financial Group and Naver Corporation, South Korea’s leading internet company. The proceeds of this round of fundraising will be used to finance SGSPL’s growth through further penetration into existing markets with additional investments in the first mile, scaling-up of its supply chain and for developing new reseller channels. Chinese giant Alibaba, which also led the Series E round in BigBasket last year, is the largest investor in the company, with about 30% stake.
CDC has been investing in India for over 30 years. It has committed more than $1.7 billion to the country and has been an investor, directly or indirectly, in over 300 companies. Its primary aim is to support responsible commercial growth that increases employment and access to services that improve quality of life. All financial returns are reinvested into more impact focused businesses. Founded in 2011, SGSPL is headquartered in Bengaluru and serves resellers in 10 metro cities and 15 Tier-II cities. The company, which offers more than 20,000 products from 1,000 brands in more than two dozen cities, will deploy the fresh capital into expanding its supply-chain network, adding more cold storage centers and distribution centers to serve customers faster. BigBasket also plans to add about 3,000 vending machines that offer daily eatable items, such as vegetables, snacks, and cold drinks in residential apartments and offices by next month. Infusion of $150 million for BigBasket, which raised $300 million last year, comes at a time when both Walmart’s Flipkart and Amazon are increasingly expanding their grocery businesses in India.
India’s retail market, valued at more than $900 billion, is increasingly attracting the attention of VC funds. Since 2014, online retailers alone have participated in more than 163 financing rounds, clocking over $1.38 billion. More than 882 players are operational in the market. Following this, Big Basket makes three acquisitions as it forayed into different services as such as milk delivery and instant deliveries through vending machines, in a bid to increase frequencies in transactions. The challenge for BigBasket remains fighting a growing army of rivals, including hyperlocal delivery startups including Grofers, which raised $60 million earlier this year, unicorn Swiggy and Google-backed Dunzo, which is increasingly becoming a verb in urban Indian cities.