boAt raises $60 Mn from Warburg and Malabar, withdraws IPO plans

Consumer electronics startup boAt has raised Rs 500 crore (around $60 million) from its existing shareholder Warburg Pincus and new investor Malabar Investments.

In January 2021, boAt had raised $100 million from Warburg Pincus followed by a $6.7 million investment from Qualcomm in April.

This fresh investment will enable the company to scale up its business across channels and geographies, further strengthen its category leadership within audio, enhance its R&D and design capabilities, and support building a local manufacturing ecosystem, the company said in a press release.

The Delhi-based company had filed a draft red herring prospectus (DRHP) with SEBI to launch its initial public offer (IPO) worth Rs 2,000 crore in January this year. Four months later, it also received approval from the market regulator for the upcoming IPO. However, the company has formally withdrawn its listing plans. A senior executive at boAt confirmed the development to Entrackr. According to the person, boAt was allowed to raise Rs 180 crore before IPO but the company has raised more than Rs 500 crore of equity so it proactively withdrew its DRHP. The company is likely to reconsider its IPO plans in the next 12-18 months. The person requested anonymity.

Most recently, Droom withdrew its IPO plans while a clutch of companies including MobiKwik delayed their listing plans amid market volatility.

Aman Gupta, co-founder & Chief Marketing Officer of boAt said that the new funding will allow us to invest significantly to disrupt the smart watches spaces with more innovative products. Less than a couple of years ago, boAt entered the smartwatches category.

Launched in 2014, boAt controls five brands in its portfolio including boAt, Redgear (acquired in 2020), Tagg (acquired in 2022), wearable brand Defy and its own personal care and grooming brand Misfit. The partnerships with global companies like Qualcomm, a shareholder in boAt, Dolby, Dirac, and others have helped the company as it claims to be the top audio brand in the country and the second in earwear brand globally.

The company is also putting plans in place to take the boAt brand overseas. Currently, a significant proportion of boAt’s products (1 million units every month) are now being produced in India. Earlier this year, the company entered into a joint venture with electronics manufacturer Dixon Technologies to manufacture its products in the country.

boAt was one of the few profitable startups to file for IPO. During H1 FY22, the company registered a profit of Rs 118.3 crore whereas the company’s revenue was recorded at Rs 1,548 crore for the six month period. The company further claims that it closed FY22 at Rs 3,000 crore in revenue with a 100% year-on-year growth.

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