Zomato, India’s foodtech unicorn, has raised another $250 million from both existing and new investors on Tuesday as it prepares for its initial public offering (IPO) later this year. This came two months after it had closed a $660 million funding round, with investors including Baillie Gifford, Luxor Capital, Steadview, D1 Capital, and Mirae Asset.
Kora Management led Tuesday’s round with 115 million, Fidelity Management and Research put in $55 million while Tiger Global Management gave $50 million. New investors included Bow Wave Capital, which contributed around $20 million, and Dragoneer Investment Group, which put in about $10 million.
Tuesday’s investment pushed Zomato’s valuation from $3.6 billion to $5.4 billion, a significant increase of $1.8 billion which would improve its chances during the IPO in the first half of 2021.
Since 2020, Zomato has been raising money through funding rounds to boost its cash reserves, acquisitions and survive price wars that might come about in the future. The company had been previously looking at acquisition potential in the logistics space. Zomato had acquired the food delivery business of Uber in 2020, coming up as a strong competitor to the $3.6 billion company Swiggy. Zomato currently operates with over 440,000 delivery partners.
Zomato co-founder and CEO Deepinder Goyal said in September 2020 that Zomato was working on its IPO for “sometime in the first half” of 2021 and was raising money to build a war chest for “future mergers and acquisitions, and fight any damage or price wars from our competition in various areas of our business.”
Goyal had tweeted in December that Zomato had raised $140 million in a secondary transaction, meant to give a partial exit to Zomato’s Chinese investors. It partnered with FinTech firm InCred in the same month to help restaurant partners with easy and risk-free credit options. InCred’s services aid companies with loans for small- to medium-sized business (SMB) loans in channel finance, term debt, and capital debt.
Zomato is currently in strong control of the food delivery market in India with a market share of nearly 50%. It is competing with both Swiggy and Jeff Bezos’ Amazon, which has spread fast and has been eyeing the Indian markets for some time.
“We find India’s food technology sector well-positioned for sustained growth as the unitary economy improves. Acceptance rates are one of the highest in India with 20-25% and consumer traction is on the rise. The market is largely a duopoly between Zomato and Swiggy with 80% share,” Bank of America analysts wrote in a recent report.
According to Zomato Chief Sales Officer Rakesh Ranjan, India’s food delivery sector isn’t close to what it was before the pandemic. Both firms were hit hard by the pandemic in 2020 where hundreds of jobs had to be eliminated to maintain their businesses and comply with regulations set by the government. Goyal remained optimistic, saying that the Indian food delivery market was “rapidly coming out of the shadows of COVID-19.”
“December 2020 is expected to be the highest GMV month ever recorded in our history. We are seeing a GMV around 25% higher than our previous highs in February 2020. I am extremely excited about what lies ahead and the impact we will create for our customers, delivery partners, and restaurant partners,” he said.