Gurgaon-based hyperlocal delivery start-up Grofers has raised USD120 million (Rs 800 cr) in latest funds largely from Japan’s SoftBank Corp. Apoletto Asia, the personal investment vehicle of DST Global’s partners, Russian billionaire Yuri Milner, and existing investors Tiger Global and Sequoia Capital also participated in the round, a source close to the company confirmed.
The third round of fund-raising comes within a year of Grofers raising USD35 million from existing investors Tiger Global Management and Sequoia Capital in April. The company has also raised USD10 million in the second round in February, from both Tiger and Sequoia.
Grofers was founded in 2013 and currently delivers in 25 cities and gets about 30,000 orders in a day. The company lists all neighbourhood stores on its platform, and employs a delivery crew of 4,000 people.
The funding comes at a time when majority of food tech startups are finding it difficult to secure funds and survive, beyond the first round of funding. Bengaluru-based online restaurant SpoonJoy also announced that it was rolling back operations in the city and shutting down its Delhi operations.
Grofer’s peer, Localbanya.com has also temporarily suspended operations as the company gears for a technology and services upgradation. However, speculations in the industry indicate that the company may actually be strapped for cash.
“Your banya is upgrading his technology and services. We will be back shortly with more exciting features and a far better delivery experience. We can’t wait for you to experience the new and improved Localbanya,” a message posted on company’s website read.
On October 9, Bengaluru-based startup Dazo decided to shut down its operations less than a year after inception. Despite raising an undisclosed amount of funding in April from Google India chief Rajan Anandan, Amazon’s country manager Amit Agarwal, Commonfloor founder Sumit Jain, TaxiForSure founder Aprameya Radhakrishna and former FreeCharge chief executive Alok Goel, the company decided to call it quits due to lack of capital.
Grofers competes with Snapdeal-backed PepperTap (Nuvo Logistics Pvt. Ltd), TinyOwl (TinyOwl Technology Pvt. Ltd) and Swiggy (Bundl Technologies Pvt. Ltd) that connect customers with supermarkets and restaurants through apps and deliver products on demand, in a few hours or even quicker.