Indian lifestyle e-tail venture Jabong has been brought under a new holding firm Global Fashion Group (GFG), which also houses four other online fashion e-com startups backed by tech incubator cum investor Rocket Internet and Swedish investment firm Investment AB Kinnevik.
The plan to create the emerging markets focused fashion e-com firm was announced last year and has now been completed.
Luxembourg-based GFG has now become the umbrella firm for five fashion e-commerce companies namely Dafiti (Latin America), Jabong (India), Lamoda (Russia and CIS), Namshi (Middle East) and Zalora (South East Asia and Australia).
It has simultaneously announced closure of a new funding round where it raised €32 million ($35 million) from Tengelmann Ventures and Verlinvest at the merger valuation of €2.8 billion, which was first announced in early September. The group plans to use the fresh funding to fuel its growth plans across 27 countries in four continents. It has recently set up operations in Belarus, Ukraine, Lebanon and Brunei and globally now employs over 8,500 people.
Following the fresh funding, Kinnevik owns 25.4 per cent stake in GFG, while Rocket Internet and Access Industries own 23 per cent and 7.4 per cent stake, respectively.
Meanwhile, Romain Voog, former head of Amazon France, has been named as its first chief executive officer. GFG has also hired 34-year-old Nils Chrestin, former CFO of Russian online retailer Lomada, as chief financial officer.
Voog, 43, comes on board with 13 years of online and offline retail experience and a background as a strategy consultant. Before joining Amazon, where he spent seven years, Voog was with French retail giant Carrefour for six years where he worked in various leadership roles. Ha has also worked as a strategy consultant with Boston Consulting Group and Bain & Company in Europe and in Asia.
On the other hand, Chrestin spent the last two years as managing director and CFO of Lamoda in Moscow prior to being appointed as GFG’s CFO in January 2015. Previously, Nils was a private equity investor at Morgan Stanley Private Equity.
GFG will market a wide assortment of leading international apparel and accessories brands, a tailored selection of private labels and local assortments developed for specific ethnic markets notably in India, Indonesia and the Middle East.
Jabong is one of the two top lifestyle e-tailers in India, along with Myntra. The company was earlier in talks with e-commerce giant Amazon.com, Inc for a potential acquisition worth $1.1-1.2 billion. However, the talks did not progress. Its rival Myntra was acquired by Flipkart last year.
(Edited by Joby Puthuparampil Johnson)