As startups strategize over 2022 market entry, New Delhi GlobalBees, which raised one of the largest Series A financing round in India earlier this year has taken the bull by the horn having entered the unicorn club as the firm scales its Thrasio-like house of brands.
The latest round which meant the startup’s Series B financing round was backed by Premji Invest, which is controlled by Indian tycoon Azim Premji, the nine-month-old have disclosed via a regulatory filing. The funding round which is believed to be in the regions of $110 million, values the subject startup at over $1.1 billion, according to the filing.
Among other participants of the funding round include Steadview Capital coupled with existing investors SoftBank, Lightspeed, and FirstCry, yet, Trifecta Capital equally invested $30 million as debt in the latest round.
Founded by ‘Nitin Agarwal’, formally of Edelweiss Financial, and Supam Maheshwari, equally a founder of FirstCry, now GlobalBees which have acquired and partners with digital native brands across categories like beauty, personal care, food and nutrition, home and kitchen, including sports and lifestyle, commanding $1 million to $20 million of revenue rate.
The subject startup enables these firms to scale and sell to marketplaces and through other channels precisely in India coupled with outside of the South Asia market.
“We have created and engaged with brands in the past and realized that most of these brands reach a scale after which it becomes too difficult to scale them”, according to Agarwal, a source familiar with the matter has confirmed.
“Supam and I have been talking about this for several years, trying to find ways to disrupt this market. We think there’s an opportunity to create a new house of brands that is digital-native”.
Equally, a source familiar with the matter also pointed out that Agarwal had earlier made clear that the New Delhi GlobalBees was looking to acquire up to three dozen brands. Hence, the Indian news and analysis publication the CapTable, which reported about the startup talks to raise a round at the unicorn valuation in October, noting that GlobalBees is in different stages of conversations aimed at closing deals with at least 15 brands.
While Thrasio is known to have taken about two years to become a unicorn, a good number of startups in India in their attempts are trying to replicate what is popularly known as the Thrasio-model.
In view of this, Mensa brands viewed as a similar venture by former fashion e-commerce Myntra’s chief executive, recently secured a $135 million Series B financing round that value the firm at over $1 billion. Which the aforementioned startup was six months old at the time of the funding announcement.
Like Thrasio approach, it’s been figured out several of these firms are equally attempting to acquire brands that sell midrange to high-end products in categories where competition is limited. However, with over 800 brands, it’s clear India is rapidly becoming a fast-growing market for direct-to-customer brands.
Based on this development, GlobalBees has reportedly joined over 40 other India-based startups that have entered the unicorn club this year, up from 11 last year. While the South Asian market continues to boom in recent quarters, a number of high-profile investors including Falcon Edge Capital, SoftBank, and Tiger Global have not restrained from doubling down on their investments in the subject region.
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