(Source: BloombergQuint)

Deal Street: This Logistics Startup Is $150 Million Short Of Becoming The Third Unicorn Of 2019

Six Indian startups last week raised nearly Rs 1,500 crore in venture capital funding, across sectors such as logistics, wedding and financial technology, among others. Startups based in Delhi-National Capital Region led the funding pack. Besides, a Bengaluru-based logistics startup is close to becoming a unicorn this year—third startup set to join the $1-billion valuation club after Delhivery and BigBasket.

Here’s what went on...

BlackBuck’s $36-Million Fundraise Brings It Closer To Unicorn Tag



A man directs an unseen truck into a parking space at a freight depot near Nhava Sheva Port in Navi Mumbai, India (Photographer: Adeel Halim/Bloomberg)
A man directs an unseen truck into a parking space at a freight depot near Nhava Sheva Port in Navi Mumbai, India (Photographer: Adeel Halim/Bloomberg)

BlackBuck raised $36 million (Rs 249 crore) in a fresh funding round.

Existing investor Accel Partners led the fresh infusion and invested $30.92 million (Rs 214.10 crore), the logistics startup said in a filing made with the Ministry of Corporate Affairs. B Capital, the venture capital fund of Facebook Co-Founder Eduardo Saverin, contributed the rest.

The fresh fusion values the firm at nearly $850 million, one person aware of the development told BloombergQuint requesting anonymity.

Founded in 2015, the startup provides business-to-business logistics solutions for long-haul trucking and also brings together shippers and truckers through its online marketplace. It has more than 250,000 trucks and nearly 1,000 clients in over 2,000 locations across the country, according to its website. It clientele includes Coke, Britannia Industries Ltd., Asian Paints Ltd., Unilever, Marico Ltd. and Godrej, among others.

Payments Firm BharatPe Raises $15.5 Million

Digital payments startup BharatPe raised $15.5 million (around Rs 107 crore) in a growth funding round led by U.S.-based investment firm Insight Partners and existing investors Sequoia Capital and Beenext.

The company will use the fresh capital to scale up its operations within the next two years, it said in a statement. “The funding will fuel our mission of democratising digital payments for merchants, and make UPI (unified payments interface) a preferred way to pay,” Ashneer Grover, chief executive officer and co-founder of BharatPe, said.

The one-year old startup allows offline retailers to use its app to make digital payments using QR codes via UPI. Merchants can sign up instantly and can start receiving funds in their bank accounts.

TPG Growth Bets $14 Million On A Beauty E-Tailer

Cosmetic products are displayed at a store in New Delhi. (Photographer: Amit Bhargava/Bloomberg).
Cosmetic products are displayed at a store in New Delhi. (Photographer: Amit Bhargava/Bloomberg).

Nykaa raised $14.4 million (Rs 100 crore) in a fresh funding round led by U.S.-based private equity firm TPG Growth.

The company will use the proceeds to introduce more beauty brands, expand its physical retail stores across the country and to build its e-commerce business, according to its statement.

“As we look for newer ways to serve our customers through initiatives like physical retail, Nykaa Man and Nykaa Fashion, our growth momentum will continue to remain strong in the coming years,” Falguni Nayar, founder and chief executive at Nykaa, said.

Founded in 2012 by investment-banker-turned entrepreneur Nayar, the online marketplace sells products across categories ranging from skincare, hair care, fragrances and bath and body products for both women and men.

Nykaa has been expanding its offline presence in the country and aims to open 55 stores by March next year, it said. The company is also looking to offer more than 850 brands and 100,000 products.

Others

  • Airbnb Inc. invested an undisclosed amount in Oyo Hotels & Homes. A person privy to details, however, told BloombergQuint that the amount invested is $150-200 million. As part of the strategic investment, OYO’s listings will appear on the Airbnb platform.
  • WedMeGood, a Delhi-based online marketplace for wedding management, raised $2.6 million (Rs 17.8 crore) in a growth funding round led by Orchid Asia Group, an investment fund that primarily invests in China, and is an investor in Chinese travel firm Ctrip.com.
  • SurveySparrow, a cloud-based customer experience platform that offers tools for online surveys, raised $1.4 million (around Rs 9.6 crore) from seed-stage venture capital fund Prime Venture Partners, according to the company’s statement.