SoftBank in talks to invest in logistics startup Rivigo

Gurgaon-based logistics services provider TrucksFirst Services Pvt. Ltd, which operates Rivigo, is in preliminary talks with Softbank for a fresh round of funding at a valuation of over $1 billion, a financial daily reported.

The Economic Times cited unnamed sources to peg the round at $100-400 million (Rs 642- 2,568 crore). It was, however, not immediately clear if Softbank was investing from its $93 billion Vision Fund or as an independent entity.

Email queries to Rivigo did not elicit any response till the time of writing this report.

Rivigo provides logistics services solutions, including full-truck load, part truck-load and cold chains, to industries such as e-commerce, consumer goods, automotive, retail and pharmaceuticals. It claims to have reduced the transit time in India by 50-70% compared to operators in the unorganised trucking business. It owns and operates over 2,000 trucks and has a pan-India network across 150 locations.

In November 2016, private equity firm Warburg Pincus had invested $75 million for a minority stake in the company as part of a Series C round. Rivigo was valued at about $440 million during the funding round.

In December 2015, the company had raised $30 million, including a small debt finance portion, in Series B funding from existing investor SAIF Partners and others.

Rivigo was founded in 2014 by Deepak Garg and Gazal Kalra. Garg is an IIT-Kanpur and IIM-Lucknow alumnus, while Kalra is a graduate of Stanford University and Harvard University. Both are former McKinsey executives.

The company’s rival in the logistics segment, Delhivery Pvt. Ltd had raised Rs 200 crore from China’s Fosun International as part of a larger funding round in May this year.

Another competitor, BlackBuck, had raised $70 million in a Series C funding round and counts Tiger Global as one of its investors.

Japan’s SoftBank Group Corp had recently invested $2.4 billion in e-commerce major Flipkart via its Vision Fund. The world’s largest private equity fund, backed by Saudi Arabia’s main sovereign wealth fund, besides SoftBank, had raised over $93 billion in May this year.

SoftBank’s India investment portfolio is valued at over $6 billion with investments in ecommerce firm Flipkart, online grocer Grofers and cab-hailing firm Ola.

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