Google, Lightbox, others invest $40 mn in e-comm, delivery startup Dunzo

Topics Google | Dunzo | Lightbox

Dunzo | Photo: Company website
Google-backed delivery and e-commerce firm Dunzo has attracted a fresh round of $40 million in capital from new and existing investors. Investors including Google, Lightbox, Evolvence, Hana Financial Investment, LGT Lightstone Aspada, and Alteria participated in this Series E Round. The funding would help it compete with players such as Swiggy, Zomato, Amazon and Flipkart.

This capital comes after a year of robust growth amidst the Coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic. In the coming year, the local commerce platform will focus on deploying its playbook for sustainable growth across its fastest-growing cities such as Mumbai, Chennai, and Pune. With a gross merchandise value (GMV) growth of 2X over the past year, Dunzo is now an about $100 million annualized GMV business. The growth in 2020 comes on the back of strong, organic user demand while maintaining gross margin profitability for the overall business.

“Dunzo's mission resonated stronger than ever in 2020. We have been amazed by everything merchants and users have started to depend on the platform for,” said Kabeer Biswas, chief executive and co-founder, Dunzo Digital Pvt. Ltd. “We truly believe we are writing a playbook for how hyperlocal businesses can be built with sustainable unit economics and capital responsibility. As a team, we are more focused than ever to enable local merchants to get closer to their users and build one of the most loved consumer brands in the country.”

In the last six months, Dunzo supported over 300 neighbourhoods across 8 cities, delivering essential goods to users within 29 minutes on average. Its relentless push for mobilising Indian cities and empowering the merchant ecosystem has made it the ‘go-to’ local commerce product in the country. As cities reopen, it continues to see strong growth across user segments.

"As merchants go digital, Dunzo is helping small businesses in their digital transformation journey in support of business recovery," said Caesar Sengupta, vice president, Google.

Last year in July, Google CEO Sundar Pichai announced an investment of $10 billion in the IndiaDigitization Fund.

"Through our India Digitization Fund, we’re committed to partnering with India’s innovative startups to build a truly inclusive digital economy that will benefit everyone,” said Sengupta.

Vaidhehi Ravindran, principal, LGT Lightstone Aspada, said Dunzo is building a beloved consumer services brand that redefines hyperlocal supply chains and empowers small merchants, partners, and consumers alike. "We are very excited to have been part of Dunzo’s journey from the start,” said Ravindran.

Another investor Evolvence, said that with the market potential and size of the urban convenience seekers increasing across tier-1 and tier-2 cities, Dunzo’s strong value proposition makes it a bold venture ripe for success. “Its playbook on profitability has further instilled confidence in its ability to grow sustainably and we look forward to being a part of its story,” said Evolvence.

Last year in December, Glance, the world’s leading lock-screen platform owned by Bengaluru-based mobile ad network InMobi Group, raised $145 million from  Google and Silicon Valley billionaire Peter Thiel’s Mithril Capital, an existing investor in the company. The new financing round has helped the 18-month-old Glance become the fastest company to reach unicorn status or a start-up valued at more than $1 billion, revealed industry sources.

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