Social commerce major Meesho is in advanced talks to raise up to $150 million in a fresh round, said three people aware of the details of the conversation. The talks come at a time when the company’s scale has been growing at a quick pace as more and more people turn to make purchases online.
“Naspers would lead the round and double down its stakes in the company. Other existing investors such as Facebook, RPS, Elevation Capital, and Venture Highway would also participate in the financing round that will value Meesho in the range of $1.3 to $1.5 billion,” said one of the sources on condition of anonymity.
If this deal goes through, it not only marks the entry of Meesho into the coveted unicorn club, it also doubles the company’s valuation from the last time it raised money. Meesho was last valued at $700 million when it raised $125 million from Facebook, Naspers and others in August 2019.
Sources further said that Meesho has surpassed pre-Covid-peak and currently clocks over 10-12 million orders a month.
“Meesho has over 6 million resellers on its platform and 15% of them drive over two-thirds of their business. The company’s free shipping service has also helped Meesho scale faster,” said the second person requesting anonymity.
While the company hasn’t disclosed absolute numbers regarding its growth, Meesho claimed to have grown 4X as compared to its pre-Covid level metrics.
Entrackr queries to Meesho’s co-founder and chief executive officer Vidit Aatrey and Naspers remained unanswered until the publication of this story. We will update the story as and when they respond.
The fresh round may see the partial exit of some early backers and co-founders, said the person quoted above. It’s worth noting that Meesho had announced an employee stock ownership plan (ESOP) buyback worth $5 million or Rs 37 crore.
This would be the second such program by the Aatrey-led company. Employees ranging from junior executives to senior leadership will be part of this buyback. Entrackr couldn’t independently verify the partial exit of investors and promoters.
Social commerce is enabling e-commerce to hundreds of millions of first-time consumers in tier II and III cities. Meesho dominates the space with Shop101, BulBul and SimSim. Last year had witnessed the emergence of video commerce — a new format in the social commerce segment.