SoftBank, Prosus, others help ElasticRun join unicorn club with $300 mn funding
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Japan’s SoftBank Group, Prosus Ventures and Goldman Sachs have led a $300 million funding round in Pune-based logistics startup ElasticRun, operated by Ntex Transportation Services Pvt Ltd, propelling the company to the coveted unicorn club. 

Unicorns are private companies with over $1 billion valuation. ElasticRun becomes the sixth unicorn of 2022, joining the likes of DealShare, Livspace, Fractal Analytics, Darwinbox and LEAD. The company is also the 50th unicorn from January last year. 

As a part of the transaction, ElasticRun raised $302.94 million (Rs 2,259 crore), by allotting 19,958 Series E compulsorily convertible preference shares to eight investors at an issue price of Rs 11,32,270 each for consideration in cash, the company’s filings with the Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA) show. According to VCCircle estimates, the fundraising values ElasticRun at $1.45 billion (considering $1 is Rs 74.62). The company was last valued at $400 million, when it had raised $75 million in April last year. 

According to the regulatory filing, the company plans to use the funds for expansion and growth of its operations. The Series E offer is open for subscription till 21 March this year, the filing showed, which indicates that the company may raise more funds. 

SoftBank, through its affiliate SVF II Eagle LLC has invested nearly $180 million (Rs 1,342 crore), while Prosus Ventures invested about $54.79 million (Rs 409 crore) through its affiliate Naspers Ventures BV. Chimetech Holding Ltd and Goldman Sachs invested $30.14 million (Rs 225crore) and $4.64 million (Rs 34.64 crore) respectively. 

Post the transaction, ElasticRun’s co-founders Sandeep Deshmukh, Saurabh Nigam and Shitiz Bansal will hold 12.7%, 7.5% and 7.5% stake in the company respectively, according to the regulatory filing. Prosus Ventures, meanwhile, will hold a 22.2% stake in the company after the latest stake sale. 

ElasticRun was founded in March 2016 by Deshmukh, Nigam and Bansal. ElasticRun’s technology platform builds aggregated transportation capacity according to the requirements of its clients. The startup claims to eliminate fixed set up costs by aggregating resources across channels, thus helping its customers reduce logistics spending. The company claims to cater to clients in e-commerce, pharmaceuticals, food and automotive sectors. 

 ElasticRun had raised $40 million in a funding round led by Prosus Ventures in October 2019, which saw participation from existing investors Avataar Ventures and Kalaari Capital also. Prior to that, the company had raised $8 million from Norwest Venture Partners and Kalaari Capital in October 2018, VCCircle had reported

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