Bengaluru | Mumbai: Facebook-backed Meesho is in the final stages of negotiations to raise $250 million in funding led by Softbank Vision Fund, multiple people in the know of the matter told ET requesting anonymity as the information is not public yet.

The investment round will value the nearly six-year-old Bengaluru-based startup at as much as $2 billion, which is more than double the valuation from its previous round. This also means Meesho will be the latest startup to be inducted into the coveted unicorn club.

Meesho had raised $125 million in a Series D funding round in August 2019 led by Naspers and participation from US social network giant Facebook. SAIF, Sequoia, Shunwei Capital, RPS and Venture Highway had also participated in the round.

The deal, which is in the final stages of negotiations, comes when Meesho is estimated to have largely recovered its revenues post the pandemic-induced lockdowns. The company is now targeting strong growth on the back of increased adoption.

Meesho on its website says it has over 10 million resellers on its platform and 70 million customers. These resellers largely discover customers on platforms such as WhatsApp and Instagram, while the company manages shipping and even helps them in sourcing.

Meesho and Softbank Vision Fund did not respond to ET’s queries for comment until the time of publishing this story.

In the year that ended March 31, 2020, Meesho posted a nearly four fold growth in its revenues to Rs 307 crore from Rs 80 crore in the previous year, while its losses surged by over three times to Rs 315 crore during the period in review.

However, the lockdown announced by the government at the end of the previous fiscal almost completely halted Meesho’s core businesses. Post the opening of markets, Meesho has been able to grow its revenues and orders back up to almost pre-Covid levels, an analyst said.

Meesho is currently the leader in India’s fast-emerging social commerce sector which is seeing competition heat up amongst players like Dealshare, Glowroad, Shop101, Kiko TV, among others.

While investment in the sector dipped during 2020, industry watchers are expecting a lot more deals to be closed in the social commerce space this year, as the avenues for building more traditional e-commerce companies has shut given the scale and size of players like Amazon and Walmart-owned Flipkart.





News Of India

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