1. LtoR Sanjeev Barnwal Vidit Aatrey Founders Meesho e1528354604914

Bangalore-based social commerce platform Meesho has raised $50 million in a Series C funding round from investors including Shunwei Capital, DST Partners and RPS Ventures. Meesho’s existing investors Sequoia India, SAIF Partners, Venture Highway and Y Combinator also participated in this round.

The startup will utilize the latest funds for expanding into more categories and scaling domestic & international supply base. Prior to this round, Meesho had raised $11.5 million in a funding led by Sequoia India, in June this year.

So far, the startup has raised a total of about $65.5 million over six funding rounds and out of this $61.5 million have been raised in this year alone.

Founded in 2015 by IIT-Delhi graduates Vidit Aatrey and Sanjeev Barnwal, Meesho is creating the next big e-commerce distribution channel via homepreneurs selling on WhatsApp, Facebook, and Instagram. It has network of 20,000+ homepreneurs strong across 150+ cities in India.

Speaking of the investment, Kabir Misra, founder & managing partner, RPS Ventures, said, ” The company has great investors and a young entrepreneur at the helm. We are hoping to assist them with our accumulated experience in the sector to further grow their business in India and beyond.”

The company claims to have more than 1 million re-sellers on its platform. For every transaction, a re-seller makes a 10-20% commission.

“We’ve witnessed 10x growth over the last six months. “With this new round of funding and the strong team we’ve built at Meesho, we will reach end consumers not served well by traditional e-commerce models,” said Vidit Aatrey, co-founder, Meesho.

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WhatsApp, which is estimated to have over 100+ million users in India, is recognized by Meesho as unparalleled as a distribution channel for selling online or retaining customers.

More than 30% of Meesho’s user-base is non-English and it plans to launch in new vernacular languages over time to go deeper into smaller towns and cities. Currently, it has over 1 million resellers on its platform. For every transaction, a reseller makes a 10-20% commission.

Meesho competes with other social commerce startups namely Shop101 and Glowroad, they however have not raised capital as much as Meesho had.

For China’s Shunwei Capital, this is yet another India investment this year. Prior to this, Shunwei had invested in Vokal, a vernacular P2P knowledge-sharing platform founded by TaxiforSure co-founder Aprameya Radhakrishna. This was followed by investment in Upwards Fintech Pvt. Ltd, a Mumbai-based micro-lending platform, in September this year.

Shunwei also led a $6.25 million (Rs 43 crore) funding round for Pune-based online lending startup LoanTap, and participated in a $30 million Series B round raised by Cheche365.com, an auto insurance search engine, in November last year. A month before that, Shunwei along with Xiaomi Technologies led an $8 million Series A round for Bangalore-based microlending platform KrazyBee.


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