Grocery and fresh foods online store BigBasket has raised $150 million. It is understood that the company has become a Unicorn with its valuation crossing the $1 billion mark. Mirae Asset-Naver Asia Growth Fund, CDC Group and Alibaba are the major investors in this round. CDC Group is an investment firm owned by the UK government.
Interestingly, this announcement has come directly from co-founder of BigBasket, Vipul Parekh, as reported in Economic Times. He has further mentioned that out of this $150 million, $100 million will be spent towards improving the supply chain arrangements, investing in new technology and reducing on costs.
BigBasket has managed to look beyond the grocery segment it started with and has been adding more products in its offering. Beauty products and fresh meat were some of the latest categories to be added while milk subscription is another area that can bring in a lot of potential business. The company has spread into making supplies to hotels and restaurants and even offline retail stores. The main revenue earner continues to be the ecommerce section that books orders and makes deliveries.
BigBasket claims it has initiated action towards improving efficiencies in its operations in the past few months. From a level of 60% direct sourcing from farmers in as span of 48 hours, they will soon improve to 90% of items being procured within 24 hours. There is a move to increase the number of dark stores in Bengaluru alone to 30 from 12 at present.
Steps like these will ensure the already dropping level of losses are brought further down. The company says they will turn into a profit-making venture quite soon and the breakeven point will be reached once the revenue figure crosses $800 million.
Though BigBasket has pulled far ahead of rival Grofers, competition from deep-pocketed giants like Amazon, Flipkart and even Reliance could keep it on its toes.
Opening vending machines in strategic locations and stepping into the wholesale arena are also steps towards expansion of the business.