New York-headquartered hedge fund Tiger Global, which has pumped hundreds of millions of dollars into the Indian startup ecosystem in the first half of this year, is now betting big on the country’s rapidly growing social e-commerce space.
The investment firm recently co-led a USD 144 million round in DealShare, along with WestBridge Capital, Alpha Wave Incubation, and Z3Partners. Partners of DST Global, Matrix Partners India, and Alteria Capital also participated in the funding round for the Bangalore-based startup that deploys a group-buying model and promotes it through its community of micro-entrepreneurs.
With the most recent funding, the three-year-old startup has now raised USD 183 million across three rounds. According to a report by local media Entrackr, DealShare’s valuation has jumped 9x over the last seven months and stands at USD 455 million after the latest transaction.
The company plans to use the fresh capital to create an AI-driven, highly personalized, and gamified user experience, said Vineet Rao, CEO and co-founder of DealShare, in a statement.
“We will also invest in improving and scaling up our operations rapidly. We expect our footprint to increase from 20 warehouses across five states to over 200 warehouses across ten states by the end of this year,” he added.
“The funds will be used to augment the company’s current growth trajectory,” said Sourjyendu Medda, co-founder, chief business officer, and chief financial officer of DealShare.”In FY 20-21 fiscal, we grew 5X to reach USD 200 million annual GMV (gross merchandise value) run rate. We are confident of hitting a USD 1 billion GMV run rate by the end of the year, thereby building a strong 10 million customer base.”
Navroz Udwadia, co-founder and CEO of Falcon Edge Capital, one of the early backers of DealShare, said the company will break even in the next 12 months.
“The company will also expand internationally, starting with the UAE, and is establishing its first base in Abu Dhabi,” he added.
Founded in 2018 by Rao, Medda, Sankar Bora, and Rajat Shikhar, DealShare began operations by selling essentials on WhatsApp. It eventually launched its app, which users can access in their local languages, to buy curated items in groups across categories such as groceries, household items, fashion, and personal care.
Currently present in over 40 cities and towns across five states—Rajasthan, Gujarat, Maharashtra, Karnataka, and Delhi NCR, the startup plans to expand to 100 plus cities this year. With three million consumers on board, the startup claims to be catering 100,000 orders daily and adding hundreds of thousands of customers every month.
What has helped it scale significantly is its focus on new internet users in smaller cities and towns across the country and affordability driven by the group buying model. Moreover, the startup has partnered with over 1,000 local and regional brands to procure products.
“We currently have over 1,000 plus micro-entrepreneurs partners promoting the community group buying model in the country, thereby generating a massive number of employment opportunities across all tiers of cities and towns,” said Bora, co-founder and chief operating officer of DealShare. “We plan to strengthen our network further and increase it to 5000 plus by this year-end. Along with this, we plan to fuel growth by building state-of-the-art technology and infrastructure-related assets that will ensure efficiency.”
According to Griffin Schroeder, partner at Tiger Global, DealShare’s unique approach combines discovery-led social sharing, group buying, and a gamified shopping experience with a simple consumer interface.
“DealShare is well-positioned to power the next wave of Indian e-commerce growth,” he believes.