BigBasket has raised $150 million in a recent funding round. Mirae-Naver, a leading South Korean investment firm, CDC Group, the U.K. government’s development finance institution, and Alibaba Group together led the round of funding in Supermarket Grocery Supplies Pvt (SGSPL), the owner and operator of the online food and grocery retailer.
With this fund raise, BigBasket’s valuation crosses the $1 billion mark, propelling the eight-year-old e-tailer into the unicorn club — where privately-held startups are valued at $1 billion and above.
The other Indian unicorns include insurance aggregator PolicyBazaar, e-commerce site Paytm Mall, hotel chain OYO, food technology companies Swiggy and Zomato, edtech firm Byju’s, and logistics firm Delhivery.
According to Ashish Dave, head of India Investments for Mirae Asset Global Investments, SGSPL offers a transformational and convenient experience to its consumers, which makes it a preferred grocery platform. “As India moves towards organised retail that offers standardised quality, comfort and speed in the shopping experience, we firmly believe the BigBasket brand will continue to define this segment as a category leader,” he said.
The fundraise marks Mirae-Naver’s largest investment in India. The company is a joint venture between Seoul-based Mirae Financial Group and South Korea’s leading internet company Naver Corporation. “We are excited about the investment opportunities in India, which is a key geography for us, where we continue to identify and partner with market leading companies,” Dave said.
Grocery is one of the fastest-growing segments in online retail. RedSeer Consulting, a research and advisory firm, estimates that out of India’s over $500-billion grocery market, a mere 0.2% represents online retail.
Founded in 2011, BigBasket is headquartered in Bengaluru and operates in 10 metro cities and 15 tier 2 cities. It offers an assortment of over 13,000 brands, and 19,000 products across categories such as fruits, vegetables, staples, meat, beverages, and personal care.
BigBasket said in a release on Monday that the proceeds of its latest round of fundraising will be invested in scaling up its operations. “We have a unique opportunity to build one of the largest grocery businesses in the country in the country and we expect the capital raised in this round to continue to enable us to do just that,” said V.S. Sudhakar, founder, BigBasket.
“We are re-engineering our supply chain to allow for faster delivery to our resellers and to reduce the time from farm to our customers. We are also scaling up the back-end supply chain for our new businesses- BB Daily that delivers fresh milk and other fresh products and BB Instant that creates a network of vending machines,” said Sudhakar.