Info-tech

Agri-tech platform, Ninjacart, raises Rs 250 cr in series B funding round

Sangeetha Chengappa Bengaluru | Updated on December 12, 2018 Published on December 12, 2018

Investment to be used to launch in new cities, build technology, data science and supply chain automation

Agri-tech platform Ninjacart that connects farmers to retailers, has raised Rs 250 crore in a series B funding round from Accel US, Syngenta Ventures (Switzerland / USA), Neoplux (South Korea), Jo Hirao (Founder of ZIGExN), HR Capital (Russia) and Trifecta Capital.

All existing investors including Accel India, Nandan Nilekani, Mistletoe and Qualcomm Ventures also participated in this round. The RainMaker Group acted as the sole advisor to Ninjacart for this funding round.

Ninjacart currently operates in Bengaluru, Hyderabad and Chennai, with a team of 800 people. It has built a sourcing network of over 3,000 farmers across South India, and moves fresh produce from the farm to over 4,000 retailers in less than 12 hours on a daily basis.

The funding will be used to expand its market reach to 10 cities, strengthen the product/ technology team, ramp up its headcount by 1,200 people and scale up its supply chain infrastructure with over 200 collection/ distribution/ fulfilment centres from 60 at present, in the next 18 months.

Commenting on the fresh fund raise, Thirukumaran Nagarajan, CEO and co-founder of Ninjacart said, “This is a huge validation of Ninjacart’s business model, our relentless focus on solving India’s agri-marketing problem and the team’s execution capabilities. We are thrilled to have a new set of global investors who can amplify our vision. Our focus will be on expanding to new markets and continuing to innovate on behalf of our farmers and customers.”

Founded in 2015, Ninjacart is a Bengaluru-based start-up founded by former TaxiForSure executives, Thirukumaran Nagarajan, Kartheeswaran K K, Ashutosh Vikram, Sharath Loganathan and Vasudevan Chinnathambi. Ninjacart started off as a hyper-local delivery firm, but soon realised that it was not a viable business as the margins were very low. In January 2016, it pivoted to the new business model of sourcing fresh fruits and vegetables from farmers at higher than local market rates and and supplying them to kirana store retailers.

“We leverage technology to solve one of the toughest agricultural supply chain problems and enable retailers and merchants to source fresh produce directly from the farmers at competitive prices. The aim is to increase farmers’ incomes by helping them double production on the same acreage, reduce food wastage, introduce competitive prices for retailers who make good margins of 30-40 per cent and ensure quality food for all consumers,” said Vasudevan.

Including this funding round, Ninjacart has now raised a total of Rs 310 crore. It has been identified as one of the top 11 Indian start-ups to enable $50 billion in online commerce by Google, Bain and Omidiyar.

Published on December 12, 2018
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