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ShopClues raises $1 million from Unilazer Ventures

Online marketplace ShopClues has raised $1 million in a bridge round of funding from Unilazer Ventures, reports The Economic Times. The Indian arm of Clues Network Inc, has allocated about 1,027 equity shares to the Indian subsidiary for raising this round, as per business research platform Paper.vc.

Amid rising competition in the online retail sector, ShopClues raised Rs 50 crore as venture debt from InnoVen Capital in May 2017. That year, the company also launched four in-house labels: Digimate for electronics, Home Berry for home & décor, women’s workwear fashion brand MEIA and men’s footwear label Baton. The company reportedly expects these brands to account for 12 per cent of its revenue this fiscal year.

As per regulatory filing, ShopClues’ total revenue was Rs 180.3 crore in 2016-17, from Rs 161.4 crore in the preceding fiscal. Losses for the year ended March 2017 stood at Rs 332.65 as compared to Rs 383 crore in the previous year.

In January 2016, the company said its valuation was $1.1 billion after it raised an undisclosed amount as series E fund from sovereign wealth fund GIC along with existing investors Tiger Global and Nexus Venture Partners. In January 2015, Shopclues raised $100 million investment led by Tiger Global with participation from existing investors Helion Venture Partners and Nexus Venture Partners.

Competition

In August 2017, after talks on merger with Snapdeal collapsed, Flipkart raised investment of nearly $2.5 billion from SoftBank’s $100 billion Vision Fund. Amazon also invested a further Rs 1680 crore into the India unit last year, which is its second largest market after USA. Currently, Amazon’s total investment commitment in India stands at $5 billion.

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Paytm raised funding of $1.4 billion from SoftBank Group in 2017 and earlier spun off e-commerce business as a separate entity and raised $200 million from Alibaba. Notably, investments raised by the three top players in the sector are much larger than that of ShopClues.

The race to lead the online retail sector in India has become highly competitive with the size of funds infused in it. In the next 15 years India will see more people come online than any other country. In 2015, e-commerce sales were about $16 billion and by 2020, the online retail market could be more than seven times larger, according to Morgan Stanley.

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