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Grocery Delivery Unicorn BigBasket Gets INR 350 Cr Cash Infusion Amid Increasing Competition

Grocery Delivery Unicorn BigBasket Gets INR 350 Cr Cash Infusion Amid Increasing Competition

The investment comes within two months after the grocery unicorn raised INR 1,000 Cr from its Tata-owned holding company

Tata Digital, which acquired BigBasket in May 2021, has invested $375 Mn in the grocery delivery major so far

BigBasket recently launched its quick commerce vertical called BBNow

BigBasket has received another big cash infusion from its holding company–Supermarket Grocery Supplies, raising INR 350 Cr according to its financial documents.

According to financial data accessed by the business intelligence platform, Tofler, BigBasket’s parent company, Innovative Retail Concepts, has received the investment from Supermarket Grocery Supplies, a Tata-owned company which acts as the holding company for the BigBasket operator.

BigBasket has allocated 3.5 Cr shares to Supermarket Grocery Supplies, at a value of INR 100 per share. The transaction is dated May 24.

Tata Digital owns a majority stake in Supermarket Grocery Supplies. After Tata Digital acquired a majority stake in BigBasket in May 2021, Supermarket Grocery Supplies was made its holding company.

The fresh cash infusion comes less than two months after BigBasket had raised INR 1,000 Cr from its holding company. Counting the $200 Mn investment at the time of acquisition, this makes it the third time Tata Digital has invested in BigBasket. In total, the Tata Sons subsidiary has invested around $375 Mn in BigBasket in just over a year.

Delivering Groceries Across Time Frames

The grocery unicorn has been working on diversifying its business across multiple channels pertaining to grocery delivery.

Besides, in late April this year, BigBasket launched BBNow, its own quick commerce service to compete with the likes of Zepto, Blinkit and Swiggy Instamart. Inc42 had exclusively reported in October 2021 about BigBasket’s plans to launch its quick commerce vertical.

BBNow offers deliveries within 1.5-2.5 km of its dark stores, with access to a limited inventory of 3,000 products across multiple categories. The product range includes beverages, fresh fruits and vegetables and other daily use products. 

BBNow claims to deliver within 10-20 minutes of ordering, putting it squarely in the crosshairs of Zepto and Blinkit.

Apart from this, BBExpress is another venture from BigBasket, claiming to deliver within an hour. The range increases from 1.5-2.5 km to 6 km, while the product inventory increases from 3,000 to 8,000.

In a press statement, the company said that BBNow and BBExpress were attracting orders with a typical size of around 3-5 products and valued at around INR 400.

“For impulse and emergency purchases, the BBNow service with its 10-20-minute delivery window is a great option, and for unplanned buyers who are not in extreme haste, we have BBExpress delivery within an hour of order placement,” said Harish Menon, cofounder and CEO of BigBasket.

All of this has seen BigBasket’s total operations expand to 40 cities in India, recording about 15 Mn customer orders per month.

BigBasket is also a part of Tata Digital’s super app, Tata Neu. The grocery delivery unicorn’s app is plugged into the super app via API and can be accessed from its groceries section as is.

The company is also working on owning offline stores. It launched its offline store chain called Fresho in November 2021. BigBasket also acquired the enterprise business unit of deeptech startup Agrima Infotech in February this year. 

Agrima facilitates self-checkout at offline stores with its food recognition platform, Psyight. Essentially, the platform helps identify all Indian fruits and vegetables uniquely just from an image. This is touted to help BigBasket improve the offline shopping experience for its customers.

BigBasket is readying itself to compete on all fronts, and with the quick commerce market expanding as fast as it is, the incoming funds will prove to be vital.

Further, a RedSeer report says, India’s quick commerce market is expected to reach $5 Bn by 2025, with the egrocery market reaching $22 Bn at the same time. India’s online grocery market currently stands at $3 Bn.