The round was led by FirstCry and some of its investors and included Lightspeed Venture Partners, the company said on Monday. This is the largest Series A funding round by a Thrasio-style startup in India. Vikas Agnihotri of SoftBank, Harsha Kumar of Lightspeed, Atul Gupta of Premji Invest, Sudhir Sethi of Chiratae Ventures and Kshitij Sheth of Chrys Capital will join the GlobalBees board as part of the deal, according to a statement released Monday.
ET was the first to report on FirstCry’s
plans to launch a Thrasio-style investment platform on April 28.
“GlobalBees looks to partner with digitally native brands across categories such as beauty, personal care, home, kitchen, food, nutrition, sports, lifestyle etc with a revenue rate of $1 million to $20 million,” the company said.
India is seeing an increase in smaller brands. There are 120,000 sellers on Amazon India, of which around 4,200 crossed Rs 1 crore in sales in 2020. “These numbers present an excellent opportunity for GlobalBees to accelerate the D2C sector,” GlobalBees said.
“Apart from capital, GlobalBees brings in strategic capabilities across marketing and growth, technology, distribution, sourcing, branding, warehousing, logistics, R&D, product and operations—all things essential to rapidly scale brands in the digital space,” said Nitin Agarwal, co-founder and chief executive of GlobalBees.
The company is already in the process of integrating around 10 digitally native brands in India. “India is at the cusp of a direct-to-consumer (D2C) revolution with an estimated market size of $200 billion in the next five years,” said Vikas Agnihotri, operating partner at SoftBank Investment Advisers. “Indian brands have shown great promise in recent years, and we believe that GlobalBees is building great assets to accelerate the growth of digitally native brands in the country.”
Meanwhile, the Thrasio model is proving popular in India’s startup ecosystem as about half a dozen such ventures are already underway. Ananth Narayanan, the former chief executive of Medlife and Myntra, is among those looking to launch a Thrasio-like platform. Accel, Falcon Edge and Norwest Venture Partners
have committed $25 million to it.
Thrasio itself has, within three years of launch, acquired, consolidated and scaled up about 100 brands on Amazon. The company is profitable, has raised $1.7 billion across debt and equity, and is worth $3-4 billion, according to news reports.