India’s Reliance picks up 26% stake in instant-delivery firm Dunzo for $200m

Dunzo founders (from left) Ankur Aggarwal, Mukund Jha, Kabeer Biswas and Dalvir Suri.

Reliance Industries Ltd’s retail arm has invested $200 million for a 25.8% stake in Indian online delivery platform Dunzo to get a foothold into the rapidly growing market of superfast dispatch of household goods.

Billionaire Mukesh Ambani-owned Reliance Industries said on Thursday its retail arm led a $240 million funding round in Bengaluru-based Dunzo which offers lightning-fast delivery of groceries and medicines and even offers to pick up and drop off documents and other items.

Demand for services like Dunzo and SoftBank-backed Swiggy’s Genie has boomed during the pandemic when people were ordered to remain indoors and only delivery of essential items was allowed. This massive demand has also led players to intensify their battle in ensuring users are able to get their orders in 15 minutes or less.

Dunzo, which counts Alphabet Inc’s Google and Lightrock among its backers, will use the funds to expand to 15 cities from its current seven-city operation.

Last month, Grofers which offers online delivery, rebranded itself as Blinkit with a promise to speed up deliveries. The company makes 10-minute drop-offs to customers with the help of more than 100 partner stores or warehouses in eight cities.

Reliance has been ramping up its JioMart e-commerce arm in an effort to stave off competition from Amazon.com and Walmart Inc’s Flipkart in an e-retail market India forecasts will be worth $200 billion by 2026.

Last year, Reliance also offered mom–and–pop stores, known as ‘kiranas’, the option to order goods on JioMart Partner with deliveries promised within 24 hours, circumventing the usual route of going through salesmen representing consumer giants.

Reuters

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

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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.