In a major step that will further its growth, bigbasket has raised $300 million in a fresh funding round led by Chinese e-tailer Alibaba and other investors. bigbasket, which is currently India’s largest online supermarket, operates in 30 cities clocking Rs 200 crore in terms of monthly run-rate. This is expected to increase to Rs 300 crore in August and Rs 500 crore in March 2019.
India’s retail market is worth over $900 billion and grocery shopping accounts for about $600 billion of that, a segment that bigbasket is adeptly handling. The company’s brand ambassador since the last two years, Shahrukh Khan, has also extended his agreement with bigbasket for the third year, another move geared towards its increasing popularity as the largest grocery e-tailer.
Speaking about this, Mr Hari Menon, CEO and Co-Founder, bigbasket, said, “bigbasket is delighted to receive this funding from Alibaba, which will essentially be directed towards growth and consolidation. The multinational e-commerce retailer fits in best with what we believe in. The funds will be directed towards bettering our technological, analytical, and infrastructural prowess, all of which will enable the company to move up the curve. bigbasket is currently partnering with about 1800 farmers throughout the country and aims to become the ‘most preferred partner’ for up to 3000 of them. While we already enjoy the appreciation and trust of bigbasketeers, our strategy is to eventually become the one-stop-shop for all customer needs in future.”
Rather than focusing on expansion into more cities, bigbasket is planning to dig deeper into the cities it already has foothold in. In addition to partnering with farmers and gaining a larger customer base, the third big priority for the company is to become a leading employer for blue collar workers in the country – the current employee strength of bigbasket being 16,000.
bigbasket has recently crossed the 8 million customers mark and continues to expand its customer base. It has also strengthened its B2B business by expanding to the HoReCa (Hotels, Restaurants, and Caterers) segment and partnering with Kirana stores in an effort to transform them into technology-enabled modern retail stores. bigbasket closed the previous fiscal year (2016-17) with Rs 1,410 crore in revenue. The company has already broken even in 2 key markets– Bangalore and Hyderabad and is expected to break even in Kolkata, Ahmedabad and Chennai in the next three months.