Social commerce platform Meesho has entered the unicorn club with a $300 million round led by SoftBank Vision Fund. Existing backers: Porsus Ventures, Facebook, Shunwei Capital, Venture Highway and Knollwood Investment also participated in the fresh financing round.
The fresh infusion has valued the Bengaluru-based company at $2.1 billion, said the company in a press statement. Meesho would be the fifth unicorn from India this year after the new-age insurance brand Digit, SaaS startup Innovaccer, B2B infrastructure marketplace Infra.Market and NBFC Five Star Business Finance.
“…We are focused on expanding our vision — from helping aspiring women entrepreneurs to creating Meesho as a single ecosystem that will enable all small businesses in India to succeed online. And with our new vision we will enable 100 million small businesses to start, succeed and lead their operations online with Meesho as their partner in their journey,” Vidit Aatrey, founder and CEO of Meesho said.
Meesho is a de facto leader in the social commerce marketplace for unbranded products. In its six years of operations, the company claims to enable over 13 million individual entrepreneurs and more than 45 million customers in the country. It also claims to have delivered orders from more than 100,000 registered suppliers to over 4,800 cities in India.
In February, Entrackr had reported about Meesho’s potential round from SoftBank at a valuation of over 1.8 billion (pre-money).
With this fresh round, Meesho has mopped up close to $500 million across five institutional rounds. Elevation Capital, Venture Highway and Y Combinator are its early backers. Later, Sequoia had also joined them in Series B financing.
Besides fashion and lifestyle categories, Meesho also had started vegetable and grocery focused separate platform Farmiso. According to Entrackr sources, the new marketplace has been live since late last year but it’s not getting decent traction. Sources say that it has been doing a few thousand monthly orders.
Meesho’s core business has grown at a quick pace after a few months of disruption during the lockdown. It’s one of the few e-commerce companies to surpass the pre-Covid peak early this year. While its actual growth could be known when Meeso would file financials for FY21, it recorded a 3.8X surge in its operating revenue to around Rs 307 crore in FY20 as compared to Rs 80 crore in FY19.
The company’s annual losses also surged 3.1X to Rs 315.4 crore in the year ending March 2020 from Rs 100.42 crore in the preceding fiscal.
Social commerce space is largely dominated by Meesho along with a host of new platforms. Its peer Shop101 has been struggling to raise a fresh round and is in early-stage talks with Amazon, Reliance and others to get acquired. CityMall, DealShare, BulBul, EkAnek and SimSim are other direct and indirect competition to Meesho.