boAt joins the likes of Pharmeasy, Droom, Udaan, Mobikwik and other startups delaying or withdrawing IPO plans
The D2C electronics brand will also invest in its R&D and design capabilities and support the local manufacturing ecosystem
boAt cofounder and CMO Aman Gupta said that boAt would make smartwatches its second flagship product after audio
D2C electronics brand boAt has raised INR 500 Cr (around $61 Mn) from an existing shareholder, an affiliate of Warburg Pincus and new investor Malabar Investments.
The funding comes when boAt had been lining up for an IPO. It received a nod from the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) for its INR 2,000 Cr public issue a few months ago.
However, since the electronics brand has raised a fresh round, these plans will be delayed. boAt joins the likes of Pharmeasy, Droom, Udaan, Mobikwik and other startups delaying or withdrawing IPO plans.
boAt said it plans to deploy the incoming funding to fuel business expansion. The company also targets scaling up across channels and geographies in India and abroad.
boAt will also invest in its R&D and design capabilities and support the local manufacturing ecosystem. The company mentioned that it currently manufactures around 1 Mn units per month in India.
This is incidentally what boAt’s cofounder Aman Gupta also said at Inc42’s The D2C Summit 3.0. “Make-In-India is an interesting concept. We have started our journey and we recently manufactured 1 Mn (indigenous pieces) in one quarter. Now we want to grow it to 1 Mn-2 Mn per month from September 2022,” he said.
In a conversation with Inc42’s CEO Vaibhav Vardhan, Gupta mentioned that moving forward, boAt aims to manufacture 12-24 Mn products every year in India.
Gupta, also the chief marketing officer of boAt, said on the investment, “The new funding will allow us to invest significantly to disrupt the smartwatch spaces with more innovative products. And we are thrilled that investors continue to have strong conviction and confidence in the boAt story.”
Gupta added that boAt wants to make smartwatches its second core after audio. Incidentally, the audio device maker entered the smartwatch category around two years ago. Currently, it has a portfolio of around 40 smartwatches on its website.
Again, Gupta spoke about boAt’s plans to shift its focus from audio devices to wearables over the next three years at The D2C Summit 3.0.
“We are doing well. We have invested in a lot of wearables [technology] and in the next year, we will be focussing more on the category,” Gupta said at the session.
Sameer Mehta, cofounder and chief product officer of boAt, added that the D2C brand is driving R&D with boAt labs, a 120-person in-house team, and its acquisitions of KaHa Technologies.
“These products will provide richer features and deeper insights to consumers on their health and wellness, enabling them to lead more active and fulfilling lifestyles,” Mehta added.
The D2C startup posted INR 1,313.7 Cr in earnings from operations and a total profit after tax of INR 86.5 Cr in FY22.