SoftBank-backed Indian online grocer Grofers bags $20m from Times Group

Photo: Ramesh Pathania/Mint

Grofers, an Indian online grocer that turned unicorn following its $200-million SoftBank-backed Series F round earlier this year, has raised an additional $20 million by issuing one equity share and a warrant to Bennett Coleman Private Limited (BCCL), also known as Times Group.

According to a filing first seen by Inc42, BCCL has picked up one equity share worth INR1.31 million and a warrant, defined by Grofers as a debenture, worth INR1.43 billion ($20.12 million). A debenture is a medium- to long-term debt instrument used by large companies to borrow money, at a fixed rate of interest.

Crunchbase data showed that Grofers has raised a total of $532.6 million in funding over nine rounds, with SoftBank Vision Fund leading the company’s Series F funding round. The said round was also backed by Tiger Global, Sequoia Capital, and KTB.

Two months after it reached unicorn status, Grofers again secured $10 million in funding from Abu Dhabi Capital Group.

Grofers, founded by IIT graduates Albinder Dhindsa and Saurabh Kumar in 2013, operates in India’s intensely competitive online supermarket space. It has expanded its own range of brands over the last year and has over 800 products spread across various categories such as staples and kitchen ingredients, FMCG products, personal hygiene products, furnishing items, etc.

It also recently forayed into the milk business with the launch of its milk brand, G-Fresh Milk. The company is now present in 13 cities across India.

Its major competitors include BigBasket, Amazon and Walmart-owned Flipkart. In the hyperlocal delivery space, it competes with the likes of Swiggy and Dunzo. In India, both Amazon and Walmart are planning a big online grocery push.

According to a report released by consulting firm Redseer, India’s online food and grocery retail, which currently accounts for just 0.2 per cent of the overall market, is expected to touch $10.5 billion or 1.2 per cent of the overall market by 2023.

The expected growth will be driven by an increased assortment of products and efforts like express delivery operations.

Singapore Reporter/s

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Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

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  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
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Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.