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Exclusive: Sachin Bansal backs micro-delivery grocery startup Milkbasket

Exclusive: Sachin Bansal backs micro-delivery grocery startup Milkbasket
Anant Goel, co-founder and chief executive of Milkbasket.

Micro-delivery grocery startup Milkbasket has raised debt funding from Flipkart co-founder Sachin Bansal, two people directly aware of the matter told TechCircle.

Bansal put in the money through his personal investment vehicle BAC Acquisitions Pvt. Ltd, one of the persons said. He invested sometime in the second half of March, the other person said.

When contacted, Bansal said the investment was part of BAC’s treasury operations.

In a statement, Milkbasket said Bansal put in Rs 20 crore ($2.86 million). Anant Goel, co-founder and CEO of the venture, said the funds will be utilised to meet capital expenditure requirements as well as for research and development.

“Milkbasket... is now working on the next set of innovations to further consolidate its market leadership position... by automating the daily delivery supply chain and reducing the go-to market time for multi-city expansion,” Goel said.

Bansal had co-founded BAC Acquisitions in December 2018 with his IIT-Delhi batchmate and former investment banker Ankit Agarwal. He set up the firm six months after exiting homegrown e-commerce firm Flipkart in May 2018.

Bansal has made a number of investments in his new avatar and is fast emerging as one of the most prolific investors. He has invested both debt and equity capital and pumped money both in seed- and late-stage rounds.

BAC Acquisitions aims to invest in companies across a diverse range of sectors including data sciences, healthcare, energy, media and entertainment, consumer goods, engineering, retail, logistics, food and beverages, infrastructure, construction, machinery, agriculture, automobile, HR, gaming and financial services.

In recent times, Bansal has made debt investments in dockless scooter rental and sharing startups Bounce and Vogo. 

In February, he invested Rs 650 crore ($92 million then) in ANI Technologies Pvt. Ltd, which operates cab-hailing app Ola.

Recent media reports have stated that Bansal was in the final stages of discussions to acquire a 75% stake for Rs 200 crore ($28.8 million) in microfinance firm Chaitanya Rural Intermediation Development Services Pvt. Ltd.

Milkbasket

For Milkbasket, the latest round comes less than five months after it raised $7 million (Rs 49 crore then) in an extended Series A round led by US-based early-to-growth-stage venture capital firm Mayfield Advisors.

Last month,  it announced that it had acquired Noida-based online grocery venture Veggie India for an undisclosed amount.

Founded in 2015 by Anant Goel, Ashish Goel, Anurag Jain and Yatish Talavadia, Milkbasket currently has a presence in Delhi, Gurugram, Noida and Bengaluru.

Unlike bigger players in the online grocery delivery market such as BigBasket, Grofers, Amazon and Flipkart, Milkbasket positions itself as the online version of local mom-and-pop grocery stores but with more stock keeping units. It generally supplies perishable and non-perishable products that are bought in smaller quantities but with higher frequency.

The company started off by delivering milk, bread and eggs. It has since expanded its business to a whole range of daily groceries. It claims to have more than 5,000 stock-keeping units that cater to 11,000 orders a day. 

Milkbasket has raised close to $18 million in total, including the debt financing from Bansal, from Mayfield, Beenext, Kalaari Capital, Unilever Ventures, Lenovo and Blume Ventures.

In an interaction with TechCircle last year, CEO Anant Goel had said that Milkbasket aimed to expand to the top 10 cities in India over the next two years. 

This article has been modified to incorporate Milkbasket's statement.

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