firstcry

Baby products e-store FirstCry has raised an additional $10 million in its fourth round of fundraising, led by the venture capital firm New Enterprise Associates (NEA) and Valiant Capital. In February this year, the company had raised $26 million, in the same round of funding, from Valiant Capital and existing investors IDG Ventures, Ventex Venture Holdings and SAIF Partners.

Other than this, Firstcry had secured $15 million funding in its third round from Vertex Venture Holdings, SAIF Partners and IDG Ventures in January last year, $14 million in its second round from IDG Ventures and SAIF Partners in 2012 and $4 million from SAIF Partners the year before. The current round of funding brings the total amount the company has raised till date to $69 million since 2011.

FirstCry will use the fresh funds to expand online, on mobile and offline as well as investing in its self-branded products. The company mentions it will add new product categories beyond apparel, to its private label business BabyHug, such as ‘Nursery’, a category that will include items like mosquito nets, baby bedding sets and pillows, blankets, baby furniture and quilts & wraps.

Last year, FirstCry had revealed plans of increasing the number of its offline franchise stores to 100 by setting up 30 new stores by end of 2014, a target it claims to have reached. The company had also claimed then that it will set up 400 stores by December 2017.

Currently the platform offers baby care and kids products like diapers, toys, clothing, bath, skin & healthcare products, footwear, baby furniture, books and others. It claims to have more than 90,000 products from more than 1200 Indian and International brands like Mattel, Ben10, Pigeon, Funskool, Hotwheels, Nuby, Farlin, Medela, Pampers, Disney, Barbie, Gerber and Fisher Price and its own private label ‘BabyHug’ among others. In August 2013 the company also launched a subscription service on its portal for products like diapers.

The platform also offers ‘Gift boxes’ in partnership with various hospitals and maternity homes. This gift box contains products like diapers, lotions, baby wipes, etc. and is delivered to a new mother right after she delivers. The company claims that currently it delivers 7500 such boxes every month, and that over 2 lakh FirstCry boxes have already been delivered.

Competition:

– In January, baby & kids products focused flash sales site Hopscotch had raised $11 million investment led by Facebook co-founder Eduardo Saverin’s PE firm Velos Capital Partners with participation from Rise Capital, Jabbar Internet Group and existing investors LionRock Capital and Skype co-founder Tovio Annus. The company, which also raised $2 million in February 2014, acquired the online school and educational supplies store SkoolShop in May 2014.

– In April 2013, BabyOye.com had acquired Bangalore-based Hoopos, and the merged entity raised $12 million in funding from Helion Venture Partners, Accel Partners and Tiger Global. Mom&Me, run by Mahindra Retail, also runs an online store which it launched in December 2011.

Image source: FirstCry