Mumbai-based MN&C Supply Links Retail Pvt Ltd, which owns and operates online super market LocalBanya.com, is in advanced talks to raise about $5 million from an investor, a top official of the company told Techcircle.in. The existing investor will also participate in this round.
"The funds will be deployed across 18 months for technological innovation in handling the supply chain, setting up a third warehouse in Kurla (in Mumbai) and distribution, besides expanding its reach in Mumbai and entering four metros, including Pune, Bangalore and Delhi this calendar year," said Karan Mehrotra, co-founder of LocalBanya.com.
Earlier this year, LocalBanya.com had raised an undisclosed amount in Series A funding from Karmvir Avant Group, a real estate developer in Mumbai. The venture had previously also raised funding from Times Group's Brand Capital Springboard platform.
LocalBanya has adapted a lean business model that relies on a convenient mix of warehousing and cash-and-carry. This has reduced the start-up's dependence on capital-intensive operations and enabled it to put in place what it claims to be an efficient supply chain. It has warehouses in Goregaon (E) and Rabale in Navi Mumbai.
The company was started in May 2012 by Karan Mehrotra (CEO), Amit Naik (CTO) and Choudhary (COO). Mehrotra is a computer engineer who was previously involved with his family business as a distributor for FMCG firms such as Hindustan Unilever. An IIM-Lucknow graduate, Naik previously worked at Google, Directi and Larsen & Toubro. Choudhary holds an MBA from SP Jain Institute of Management & Research (Mumbai) and prior to setting up LocalBanya, worked at Raymond.
LocalBanya.com is an online store that offers 20 categories (need-based vis-Ã -vis impulse purchase categories), including fruits and vegetables, groceries, personal care, household supplies, detergents, kitchen ware, breakfast cereals and snacks, stationery, among other items.
The website claims to process around 750 deliveries a day and growing at around 25 per cent month on month with the help of a team of over 170 employees, including 75 delivery boys.
The co-founders say they are confident of clocking gross merchandise value (GMV) of Rs 50 crore this financial year. The top three categories—fruits and veggies, groceries and staples and dairy products—contribute 60 per cent of the revenue while 8 per cent of the revenues come from institutional clients, including corporates, restaurants, among others.
The company is aiming to break even in Mumbai by September this year and says it is looking to hit break even in two years in each market it enters.
The firm competes with the likes of EkStop, another Mumbai-based e-grocery which recently raised fresh capital from Ronnie Screwvala's Unilazer Ventures, besides multi-city operators like BigBasket.
(Edited by Joby Puthuparampil Johnson)