On-demand home services marketplace Urban Company’s net loss widened to Rs 249.28 crore in 2020-21 (FY21) from Rs 155.18 crore in 2019-20 (FY20) as the company’s employee benefit expenses soared more than 60%, the company’s filings with the Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA) show.
Employee benefit expenses rose to Rs 226.98 crore in FY21 from 139.49 in FY20, and accounted for nearly half of the company’s total expenses against 33% in the year-ago period. The company also had to additionally spend nearly Rs 21 crore in the pandemic-hit year, mainly for buying safety equipment material for its gig professionals to adhere to the safety protocols and guidelines of the government.
Consequently, total expenses of the company jumped to Rs 539.05 crore from Rs 418.25 crore in the year-ago period. The company’s revenue from operations, however, grew a little over 13% to Rs 289.78 crore. Sales of services continued to dominate the company’s operating revenue, and grew more than 26% to Rs 196.28 crore.
Earlier this year, the company had closed a Series F funding round, at $255 million (Rs 1866.7 crore), led by new investors Prosus Ventures, Dragoneer Investment Group and Wellington Management, which had valued the company at $2.1 billion. The company had said that it will be using the funds to invest in innovation, training, product development, enhanced quality control and safety measures for partners and consumers from the current infusion.
Founded in 2014 by Abhiraj Singh Bhal, Varun Khaitan and Raghav Chandra, Urban Company provides on-demand services including beauty and spa at home, cleaning, plumbing, carpentry, appliance repair, painting and others. Currently, the company has operations in 35 cities across India, UAE, Singapore, Australia and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Urban Company was valued close to $1 billion in August 2019, when it had raised $75 million in a round led by Tiger Global.