Shadowfax, a Bengaluru-based online-to-offline (O2O) logistics company, has closed a $22 Mn Series C funding round led by NGP Capital.
Qualcomm Ventures (the investment arm of Qualcomm Incorporated), Mirae Asset, and Shadowfax’s existing investor, Eight Roads Ventures, also joined the oversubscribed equity round.
Shadowfax claims to have been edging on its competitors with its unique Frodo technology, an AI-based location stream processing engine. This enables high-frequency decision-making, which, in turn, drives cost optimisation and enables the highest service levels in the industry, according to the company.
Prior to this funding round, Shadowfax has raised $18.8 Mn in three funding rounds. This includes $10 Mn Series B (December 2016), $8.5 Mn Series A (September 2015), and a $300 K angel round (August 2015).
Affirming his faith in Shadowfax, Aditya Gurunath Systla, vice-president at Eight Roads Ventures, said, “Eight Roads Ventures’ backing of Shadowfax in this third funding round reflects our belief in the Shadowfax model and its ability to deliver outstanding results to customers. It’s been a fascinating ride so far, and we are excited to see the next chapter of the Shadowfax story unfold.”
The company will use the recently raised funds for a concentrated 360° scale-up and, by 2021, it aims to connect four lakh new businesses and delivery partners to its platform, up from the current 40,000 connections.
Abhishek Bansal, CEO, Shadowfax, said, “Our technology, Frodo, gives us the edge by driving cost optimisations and enabling us to achieve higher service levels. The unique Shadowfax platform works on the concept of flattening the demand curve across the day which also ensures a much higher earning for our rider partners.”
Shadowfax: Leveraging Tech To Become An O2O Logistics Leader
Shadowfax was founded in 2015 by two IIT Delhi alumni — Abhishek Bansal and Vaibhav Khandelwal — with the aim of making instant deliveries a reality in India. Its logistics gateway for businesses, operating on a plug-and-play format, offers an on-demand delivery service platform to its clients.
It currently fulfils 90,000 unique orders per day. It claims to have multiplied its capabilities three times in the last 16 months alone, and is projecting 150% year-on-year growth for the next five years.
Shadowfax further claims to maintain high partner efficiency, which has enabled a unit economics of 20% on a transaction level.
It’s network of more than 30,000 delivery partners spread across over 80 cities and towns in India and plans to increase coverage to another 100 locations in the next three months.
It is operational in food, grocery, fashion, pharmacy, furniture, ecommerce, and traditional business sectors. Its clients include the likes of Dominos, Big Basket, Amazon, PayTM, Flipkart, Myntra, McDonald’s, 1MG, and many others, including smaller restaurants, merchants, and retailers.
NGP Capital has been investing in the sector globally. Upal Basu, a partner at NGP Capital, believes that the rise in Indian consumers’ expectations for doorstep deliveries has created a critical need for a national last-mile, independent logistics provider that can serve the needs of these demanding consumers and diverse suppliers at scale.
“As we move into the next phase of Indian O2O story, the market needs efficient and distributed hyperlocal logistics platforms such as Shadowfax that serve evolving customer needs of faster and cheaper product delivery. Shadowfax marks our first of many other investments to follow in India,” added Ashish Dave, head, India Venture Investments, for Mirae Asset.
Varsha Tagare, managing director of Qualcomm Ventures India, seems to be impressed by Shadowfax’s ability to deliver efficiencies in the hyperlocal segment by harnessing the power of mobile.
“We look forward to supporting the company through our investment and enabling collaborations with technical experts, who have domain expertise in mobile, to help the company’s quest towards delivering enhanced user experiences,” said Varsha.
TRuckeasy, WowExpress, Locus, Hey Deedee, are a few other notable players in the on-demand logistics space.
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