DealShare, a social commerce startup that focusses on the grocery segment, has raised $11 million (approximately Rs 78.16 crore at current exchange rates) in a seed and Series A funding round co-led by the US-based venture capital firms Matrix Partners and Falcon Edge.
DealShare said in a statement that the round also saw participation from DST Global partners, the Omidyar Network and other angel investors.
The company said it will use the funds to expand its geographic footprint and develop artificial intelligence-based solutions for its services and growing an indigenous logistics network.
Vineet Rao, chief executive officer and head of technology at DealShare, said the investment would also help to strengthen and leverage local economy and entrepreneurs through programmes targeting last-mile supply chain and the online-to-offline (O2O) store model.
Separately, Falcon Edge co-founder and partner Navroz D Udwadia said the firm was confident in its investment considering DealShare’s potential for rapid growth.
Tarun Davda, managing director at Matrix India, said the DealShare team caters to the largest chunk of consumers in India, the middle and lower income households.
DealShare, which is operated by Merabo Labs Pvt. Ltd, was founded by Vineet Rao, Sourjyendu Medda, Sankar Bora, Rishav Dev and Rajat Shikhar. The company sources products directly from local manufacturers and suppliers and every item on the platform is offered at a discount. Its services are targeted at middle- and lower-income populations belonging to Tier-II and Tier-III cities.
The company says it is currently seeing a 50% month-on-month growth rate, and is servicing more than 15,000 orders a day.
Deals in the social commerce segment
The social commerce segment has picked up investor traction recently, as more firms look toward catering to niche audiences and middle- and lower-income segments from non-metropolitan cities in the country. These startups are focussing on a variety of product categories, ranging from groceries to craft-made items.
In August, the Bengaluru- and California-based online reseller marketplace Meesho said it raised $125 million (Rs 885.7 crore) in a round led by South African tech conglomerate and investor Naspers. Earlier in June, Facebook invested in Meesho five years after first acquiring an Indian startup, Little Eye Labs.
Last month, at least two social commerce startups raised funding. HappyShappy raised an undisclosed amount in its seed funding from a clutch of high-profile investors including Beerud Sheth, Samuel Choi, Shivashish Chatterjee and Yuvraja C Singh.
Similarly, Marsplay Internet Pvt. Ltd said it raised funding from Venture Highway and a few angel investors including Xiaomi executive Alvin Tse. Existing investors including TPG Growth partner Shailesh Rao, through his personal office, and ICICI Venture director Nikhil Mohta also invested, Marsplay had said at the time.