Tuesday 11 August 2015

E-grocer BigBasket eyes $1bn value, raises $50m

Online grocer BigBasket has raised $50 million (Rs 315 crore) from its existing investors led by Bessemer Venture Partners even as the Bangalore-headquartered startup has mandated Citigroup to raise $150 million (Rs 950 crore) from a set of new investors, people familiar with the matter said.

The fund-raising process currently underway - to propel forays into 50 tier-II cities - is expected to value BigBasket at $1 billion, sources added. The latest financing round from existing investors valued the country's largest e-grocer at about $400 million.

BigBasket said it would exit the current financial year with a revenue run rate of $400 million, a four-fold jump from the $100 million in August. "Our revenue run rate projection for the next financial year, FY17, is $1 billion," Hari Menon, CEO, BigBasket, told TOI.

BigBasket's private labels bring in about 33% revenue at the moment, which may touch 40% by the end of this financial year. This is crucial in BigBasket's valuation numbers as top internet investors pour over the company's books. Menon declined to comment on the specifics of the $200 million (Rs 1,260 crore) fund-raising, including the internal round from current investors.

BigBasket's fund-raise comes amid heightened activity in the express delivery category since the beginning of this year. Hyperlocal delivery startup Grofers claims to have clocked 4 lakh orders in July, a four-fold jump from June, having already raised $45 %million from Tiger Global and Sequoia Capital in a fast-%growing market.

Even the big e-commerce players are now drawing up plans to enter this space. In March, Amazon piloted 'Kirana Now' in Bangalore, while homegrown e-commerce major Flipkart is reported to be testing what it calls fQck.

A recent Goldman Sachs report suggested the domestic online retail industry is "evolving into a hyperlocal, on-demand market". India's e-commerce market is estimated to grow 15 times to $300 billion by 2030, the report added.

Menon, Vipul Parekh, V S Ramesh, V S Sudhakar and Abhinay Choudhari co-founded BigBasket in December 2011, when they were backed by Growthstory, the family office of serial entrepreneur K Ganesh. Its other investors include Ascent Capital, Zodius Capital and Helion Venture Partners. BigBasket operates in eight cities with operations being rolled out in Kolkata and Ahmedabad currently.

The e-grocer, which primarily caters to planned buying by customers, is launching a one-hour delivery service for top-up and emergency purchases. But BigBasket's biggest bet will be its forays into the next 50 cities, which has started with Mysore.

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