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SoftBank leads $60 mn follow-on round in online grocery startup Grofers

SoftBank leads $60 mn follow-on round in online grocery startup Grofers
Photo Credit: 123RF.com

Online grocery startup Grofers India Pvt. Ltd has raised $60 million (Rs 425.4 crore at current exchange rate) in a follow-on funding round led by existing investor and Japanese Internet conglomerate SoftBank, The Economic Times first reported, citing data research platform Paper.vc.

Some other existing investors also participated in the round, which is said to be Series F.

With the current infusion, the Gurugram-based company’s post-money valuation has now touched $424 million, the report added.

Email queries sent to Grofers did not get any response till the time of publishing this report. A SoftBank spokesperson said the firm does not comment on speculation.

The development comes a few months after Grofers was reportedly in negotiations to raise $120-150 million in a fresh round led by SoftBank.

Last year in March, the company had raised Rs 400 crore (around $62 million) in a Series E round led by SoftBank and joined by existing investors US-based Tiger Global and Russian billionaire Yuri Milner's Apoletto Managers.

The venture, founded by Saurabh Kumar and Albinder Dhindsa in 2013, allows users to order groceries, pet supplies, electronic products and more online.

In January 2016, it shut operations in nine cities, which didn't see any traction despite costly marketing campaigns. It even pivoted its business model to an inventory-led one. 

Six months later, in June 2016, Grofers laid off some employees and cancelled campus job offers as part of operational restructuring.

The company is currently clocking an average of over 40,000 orders per day with an order value of Rs 1,400. It claims to have turned operationally profitable in Delhi-NCR (National Capital Region) on a per-order basis.

For the financial year ended March 2018, the company saw a surge in its net sales to Rs 29.83 crore for 2017-18 from Rs 13.23 crore the previous year. Losses fell to Rs 258 crore from Rs 268 crore during the period. 

Grofers competes with BigBasket, which is another well-funded player. Last month, a report said that BigBasket was looking to raise $150 million from US-based CDC Group Plc. and South Korean private equity firm Mirae Asset. The deal is expected to value the company at above $1 billion, making it a unicorn.

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