Startups Money

Myntra in talks with Azim Premji's investment arm and others for fresh funding

19 Nov, 2013

Wipro chairman Azim Premji's investment firm PremjiInvest and British fund-of-funds CDC are in talks invest around $50 million in Bangalore-based Myntra Designs Pvt Ltd, which runs fashion and lifestyle ecom venture, according to The Times of India.

The report quoting sources said PremjiInvest is expected to be a co-investor in the deal which may value Myntra at around $250 million.

When contacted Mukesh Bansal, co-founder and CEO, Myntra, refused to comment on the development. An email sent to the spokesperson of PremjiInvest did not immediately elicit a response. However, Rhyddid Carter, a spokesperson of CDC Group, denied the development.

If PremjiInvest does seal the deal, it would be one of its first bet on the e-com sector even as the investment firm has previously bet on the offline retail sector.

For Myntra, this will be the fifth round of funding and could take its total external funding to $114 million. This would help it sustain itself against players like Jabong, which is backed by Rocket Internet.

Earlier, Myntra had secured an additional $25 million from existing investors, including Tiger Global and Accel Partners. This funding round, which was not formally announced, followed by a $20 million Series C funding round in early 2012 led by Tiger Global.

Myntra is one of the heavily funded e-commerce companies in India. Besides $45 million in two tranches last year, it had raised around $14 million from Tiger Global, IDG Ventures and Indo-US Venture Partners (now Kalaari Capital) in March 2011. It also raised $5 million in Series A funding from NEA-IndoUS Ventures, IDG Ventures and Accel Partners in November 2008.

Earlier this year in July, reported that the etailer is looking to raise $100 million in another round of funding. The company claimed to be clocking gross merchandise value (GMV) of Rs 60 crore on a monthly basis as of September this year. It was looking to double sales to Rs 800 crore in FY14.

"Currently, the online fashion market (on the basis of run rate) is close to Rs 2,000 crore, and we have a leadership position with around 30 per cent market share," said Bansal in an interview with

While Indian e-com sector saw multiple shutdowns this year, bigger players have managed to raise loads of cash. In October this year, the largest consumer e-commerce player Flipkart raised an additional $160 million (Rs 990 crore) in the fifth round of funding started in July this year, from new investors including Belgium-based Sofina, US-based Morgan Stanley Investment Management, Dragoneer Investment Group and Vulcan Capital (founded by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen), along with participation from existing investor Tiger Global.

The other forerunner in the ecommerce sector, Snapdeal is also looking to gulp a huge investment of $150-200 million in a new round of funding from existing investor eBay, as well as SoftBank, a Japan-based telecommunications, internet and media conglomerate and a number of unnamed private equity investors.

TV18 Shopping Network Ltd, the teleshopping and e-commerce arm of Network18 that runs under the HomeShop18 brand, also raised a $14 million (Rs 87 crore) follow-on funding round with existing investors GS Home Shopping (GS), funds managed by OCP Asia Ltd (OCP Asia) and Network18. Another player, raised $12 million in a bridge round from its existing investors.

(Edited by Joby Puthuparampil Johnson)