Verlinvest bets on personal care platform Purplle via $8 mn round

Verlinvest bets on personal care platform Purplle via $8 mn round
Photo Credit: VCCircle
14 Jan, 2020

Mumbai-based online beauty and personal care platform Purplle has raised $8 million in an ongoing Series C round from Brussels-headquartered family investment firm Verlinvest. In December, it raised $27 million in a Series C from investment bank Goldman Sachs. 

With this round, the Manash Lifestyle-owned platform has raised $51.3 million so far, according to VCCEdge data. 

Venture capital firms JSW Venture Fund, IvyCap Ventures Advisors, Blume Ventures, Japan-based online gaming firm Akatsuki, Dream Incubators, beauty product company Luxasia Group’s founder Patrick Chong Fook Seng are some of the investors in the company.   

The company will use the latest funding to strengthen supply chain and platform technology along with brand building, said a statement.

“We are happy to welcome Verlinvest, a long-term high-quality investor, into the Purplle family. This investment aligns with our intent of creating a sustainable multi-decade enterprise,” Manish Taneja, co-founder and CEO of Purplle, said.

Launched in 2012 by Rahul Dash and Taneja, the platform provides a digital shopping

experience for consumers through detailed user profiles, enabling customers to test products through search keywords and purchasing behavior. 

The platform offers 1,000 third-party and own brand beauty products for men and women. It claims that the net merchandise value has more than quadrupled over the past two years.

Last month, Manash Lifestyle reported a robust three-fold growth in its revenue for the financial year 2018-19 to Rs 100 crore. The company narrowed its losses to Rs 4 crore from Rs 14 crore a year ago. It claims to have turned a cash profit since 2018. 

Founded in 1995, Verlinvest is a global investor focused exclusively on consumer brands, with assets under management worth 1.6 billion euros. Its India portfolio includes education unicorn Byju’s, Sula Wines, yogurt brand Epigamia, condiments and sauce company Veeba Foods and Kishore Biyani-founded retail brand Future Consumer.

“We believe that consumer preferences are changing rapidly with online penetration in this space and Purplle has great momentum to delight Indian consumers,” Arjun Anand, India head of investments at Verlinvest, said.

Purplle competes with FSN E-commerce Ventures-owned beauty product platform Nykaa, which was also founded in 2012 and offers over 850 multi-brand lifestyle products. In FY19, the company posted net profit of Rs 2.31 crore against a net loss of Rs 17.7 crore in the previous year while revenue rose more than two times to Rs 1,159 crore. 

 In 2018, private equity firm Lighthouse Advisors invested $15.7 million in Nykaa, making way for some existing investors to leave. Since its inception, Nykaa has raised $88 million, according to VCCEdge data.

Purplle, which estimates Indian online beauty and personal care market to be around $7 billion, expects a 15% CAGR (compounded annual growth rate) driven by increasing awareness of the category and penetration in the second- and third-tier cities.