Yet another unicorn has arrived and this time it is B2B ecommerce startup ElasticRun.
The startup supplies goods to kiranas and helps them secure inventory and working capital. It also works with e-commerce firms.
It is owned and operated by Ntex Transportation Services.
Latest Fundraise To Unicorn Status
ElasticRun has raised $300 million in its latest fundraise at a $1.5 billion valuation.
The round saw participation from investors such as SoftBank and Goldman Sachs and existing investor Prosus Ventures (the largest shareholder of Tencent).
The company said that it plans to use the funds for expansion and growth of its operations.
It has now become the 7th Indian unicorn of 2022 after Mamaearth, Fractal Analytics, LEAD School, Darwinbox, Livspace, and Dealshare.
Founders And Background
The Pune-based startup was founded by Sandeep Deshmukh, Saurabh Nigam, and Shitiz Bansal in 2016.
The three used to work as software engineers at DHL and held positions in other major companies such as Amazon, Apple and Procter & Gamble.
Deshmukh will hold 12.7% of the startup, while Nigam and Bansal are expected to hold 7.5% each.
Prosus will own 22.2%.
What It Does
It helps kiranas place bulk orders for goods online and provides them with an analytics and aggregation platform.
It also enables businesses to reach these mom-and-pop shops in the deep rural parts of India, by deploying a network of delivery services.
It has partnered with 100 brands such as Tata Consumer Products, PepsiCo, Amazon, Kellogg’s, Procter & Gamble, Reliance Retail, and Coca-Cola to supply goods to kiranas.
It uses data from its kirana network to predict demand and help companies reduce costs in their efforts to reach underserved markets directly.
Presence And Reach
Kirana stores’ relationships with the big brands and e-commerce firms helps them reach and tap into large hard-to-reach markets in rural areas.
ElasticRun here acts as an extended distribution arm of FMCG companies with its reach extending to over 10 million Kirana stores through crowdsourced logistics networks.
It currently operates in over 300 cities across 28 states and works with over 125,000 retail outlets.