BigBasket raises $6.9M in venture debt from Trifecta Capital

India’s online food and grocery leader, BigBasket, has raised $6.9 million (INR 450 million) in venture debt from Trifecta Capital. BigBasket is owned by SuperMarket Grocery Supplies. However, the company has licensed the BigBasket property to a separate firm, Innovative Retail Concepts, which eventually runs the business. The fresh funds will be used to meet the capex requirements of the company, including setting up new warehouses, strengthening the cold chain and setting up facilities for reprocessing of fruits and vegetables. According to Vipul Parekh, CFO & Co-Founder, SuperMarket Grocery Supplies, the company had access to equity capital, but went for debt as venture debt is “much cheaper,” especially on a post-tax basis and will help reduce our overall cost of capital. Also, it comes without any end use restrictions.” Building up his case for the latest funding, Hari Menon, Co-Founder, SuperMarket Grocery Supplies said:
“We are present in 25 cities and continue to optimize our supply chain. A significant part of our business is fresh fruits and vegetables, the bulk of which is sourced directly from farms. It is crucial that we maintain the quality right up to the last mile. We are in the last leg of a pilot which will ensure that all fruits and vegetables are maintained at constant temperature and there by improve shelf life of the produce by almost 10 days. This will be done using large-scale equipment such as pre-coolers and ventilators.”
He felt that funding such capex requirements is best done through debt. The company chose Trifecta Capital for its debt needs because of their knowledge of the startup ecosystem, speed and flexibility. “Besides, we hope to leverage Trifecta Capital’s deep network of relationships to build a sustainable and profitable business,” said Parekh.

BigBasket breaks even in Bengaluru and Hyderabad

Accoriding to Nilesh Kothari, Co-Founder, Trifecta Capital, the five founders of BigBasket — Hari Menon, V Sudhakar, Vipul Parekh, VS Ramesh and Abhinay Choudhari — have significant offline and online retail experience having previously built Fabmall and Fabmart-Trinethra. “They have leveraged economies of scale, technology, supply chain and logistics, backward integration and product mix to create a viable, high growth business that is delivering significant value to customers. Unlike other online grocery businesses, they are a full stack player and have already broken even in some of the key markets like Bengaluru and Hyderabad. Besides, they are backed by very high quality and deep pocketed investors. We are excited to be part of their growth story,” said Kothari. Trifecta’s strategy is to provide customized debt solutions to companies based on their specific business needs. Rahul Khanna, Co-Founder of Trifecta Capital, added, “We are also able to connect our investee companies to traditional businesses and banking channels. Several of our investee companies have benefited from leveraging our networks. Equally, our LPs are eager to find ways to collaborate with our investee companies. We are constantly looking for innovative ways to add value to our investee companies.”

Abhinav Mohapatra

An author who has a keen interest for the ‘off-beat’ <!--more-->An author who has a keen interest for the ‘off-beat’, he has covered and explored multiple facets of the marketing, advertising

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