Chennai-based local services classifieds company, Sulekha.com has raised $28 Mn in Series C round led by Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund GIC. The company had raised $10 Mn in Series A from NVP (Norwest Venture Partners) in 2006 and $6.5 Mn in Series B from NVP and Mitsui Global. Norwest Venture Partner (NVP) also participated in the current round of funding.
Founded in 2000, Sulekha.com has transformed local services ecosystem, it lists local business from across 40 Indian cities. It offers free services to the consumers, but local businesses pay Sulekha for qualified leads and besides, this it also earns through advertising. About 70% of its revenue comes from qualified lead deliveries and the rest from advertisements.
The startup will use the recent funding in expansion of its platform as well as investment in technology and branding. The company plans to expand further into tier I and tier II cities.
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As per Satya Prabhakar, the founder and CEO of Sulekha.com, “This investment by GIC and Norwest is a powerful endorsement of the vast potential of the local services opportunity in India and Sulekha’s ability to prosecute it successfully. Sulekha has cultivated deep expertise and built a sophisticated platform in 800+ local service categories including home/office services, coaching/training, health/lifestyle and property/rentals.”
According to recent estimates, less than 10% of local businesses in India have ever advertised. “Sulekha is seizing an enormous opportunity in transforming how businesses find local customers and grow and we look forward to significant scale ahead.” said Promod Haque, senior managing partner of NVP.
The website is currently competing against JustDial, a public listed local classifieds listings company.
Development was first reported by VCCircle.