Grasshoppers Pvt Ltd, Sri Lanka’s innovative logistics solutions provider, and Aavishkaar Frontier Fund have successfully completed negotiations on an investment. This is the second investment of Aavishkaar Frontier Fund in Sri Lanka, after investment in Ma’s Tropical Foods in 2016.
Aavishkaar, part of the Aavishkaar – Intellecap Group is a global pioneer in Entrepreneurship Based Approach to Development through venture capital investments in enterprises working with the low income population in rural and underserved markets. Aavishkaar began with a focus on early-stage enterprises operating in India, and with the Frontier Fund in 2015, became the first Indian venture capital fund to foray internationally, investing in enterprises operating in South and South East Asia. The Grasshoppers’ investment is the fifth investment from its Frontier Fund, a regional fund which invests in Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Indonesia. Since its incorporation in 2002, Aavishkaar has made more than 58 investments and currently manages US$ 200 million of funds.
Grasshoppers Pvt Ltd is the brainchild of Mr. Dulith Herath, founder of Kapruka.com which is the leading e-commerce player in Sri Lanka and Dr. Harsha Liyanage, the founder of Sarvodaya Fusion, a unique not-for-profit self-sustaining model promoting IT Education across Sri Lanka through 100+ franchisees across the island. The investment will enable Grasshoppers to meet its goal of creating an island-wide distribution network with income opportunities for local communities participating in the business model.
Grasshoppers has developed a proprietary technology stack that facilitates interactions within its logistics supply chain and provides key differentiating features like traceability of goods through its network, to their clients. This initiative was launched in January 2016 and has gained significant traction with different segments of customers including leading e-commerce players, corporates and MSME customers. Through their unique and customized product offerings, the model has the potential to meet a wide gamut of logistics service requirements in the country, from both within Colombo and outside Colombo.
“Grasshoppers has tremendous potential for scaling up its business with its combination of excellent management team with track-record of building successful businesses, approach of developing curated technology offering for the market, lean growth model and focus on promotion of entrepreneurship in the hinterland of Sri Lanka. We have seen disruptive innovations in the logistics sector by tech-enabled players in other markets and are very bullish on the success of Grasshoppers in Sri Lanka.” said Sanchayan Chakraborty, Partner at Aavishkaar.
“Kapruka.com has grown in leaps and bounds in the ecommerce boom in Sri Lanka. But I am keen to share the resources and in-depth knowledge of running a full-blown fulfilment tools that we have gained along the way. I see e-commerce as a goldmine and Grasshoppers as the mining tool that we give to all entrepreneurs. We hope this tool enables more people to join the e-commerce revolution as we have taken away a major barrier for startups, that of timely delivery of the product.” said Mr. Dulith Herath, co-founder and CEO of Grasshoppers.