Online trucking platform BlackBuck is the newest entrant to India’s growing list of unicorn startups, raising $67 million as part of its latest Series E round of equity financing at a valuation of $1.02 billion.
The round was led by Tribe Capital, IFC Emerging Asia Fund and VEF. Existing investors Wellington Management, Sands Capital, and International Finance Corporation also participated in the round.
In an interaction with Mint, Rajesh Yabaji, co-founder and chief executive of BlackBuck said that the company is looking to foray into financial services and help its trucking partners with insurance and other working capital needs.
“BlackBuck started with a dream to re-imagine trucking, to make it simpler and more efficient. It has been six years and we are just getting started to make a difference. We continue to dedicate ourselves for the foreseeable future to solve fundamental Indian trucking problems. The new financing round gives us more firepower to invest in fundamentally hard trucking problems and continue deepening our reach and impact,” added Yabaji.
At present, Blackbuck provides intercity logistics services to large companies, and small and medium enterprises (SMEs) across all major product categories including minerals, fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG), to name a few.
The platform has a network of over 700,000 truckers, which operate 1.2 million trucks across India. BlackBuck witnesses over 15 million monthly transactions on its platform. It digitises fleet operations for the truckers and operates a marketplace to help match trucks with relevant loads.
“India’s supply chain and logistics industry is moving from paper and pencil to digital. BlackBuck’s ability to measure output and productivity growth has streamlined logistical challenges for the industry over a short time frame. Its continued high-velocity growth promises to bring even greater transformation to the Indian trucking ecosystem,” said Arjun Sethi, co-founder and partner at Tribe Capital.
With the pandemic giving rise to digitised supply chains, more than 90% of BlackBuck’s trucking loads are utilised by SMEs, Yabaji added.
“At the IFC Emerging Asia Fund, we are excited to partner with Blackbuck in its next phase of growth. We have been impressed with how Blackbuck has continued to leverage technology and its deep understanding of the long-haul freight market to offer solutions that address typical pain points for both the truckers and shippers,” said Saadia Khairi, fund head, IFC Emerging Asia Fund.
In the past year, BlackBuck has also forayed into Europe and set up its office in Poland to disrupt the growing European logistics market.
This article was first published on livemint.