* IFC to invest up to 15 mln euros in Dafiti
* To invest as much as 10 mln euros in Lamoda
* Latest fundraising success for Rocket Internet start-ups
* E-commerce starting to take off in emerging markets
BERLIN, Jan 28 The World Bank's private-sector
arm is investing up to 25 million euros ($34.18 million) in two
online retailers, Lamoda in Russia and Dafiti in Latin America,
the latest fundraising success for German venture capital firm
The bank's International Finance Corporation (IFC) will
invest up to 15 million euros in Dafiti and up to 10 million in
Lamoda, acknowledging the importance of the retail sector for
"Internet companies are speeding up modernization of the
retail supply chain in developing countries, which promotes
consumer spending -- a key component of economic growth," Atul
Mehta, an IFC director, said in a statement.
"Their investments in logistics, information technology and
marketing are rapidly generating employment, especially for
women and young people."
Rocket Internet, the Berlin-based venture capital group
behind booming European fashion e-tailer Zalando, has raised
hundreds of millions of euros of funding in the last year for a
raft of online retailers it has launched across the globe.
While still relatively undeveloped compared with the United
States and western Europe, e-commerce is starting to grow
rapidly in emerging markets as Internet access improves, helped
by the rapid spread of smartphones.
Dafiti, launched in 2011 with a focus on Brazil, is also
active in Colombia, Chile and Mexico. Its other investors
include Sweden's Kinnevik, Canada's Ontario Teachers
Pension Plan, Quadrant Capital Advisors and JP Morgan.
Lamoda, which launched in Russia in 2011 and expanded to
Kazakhstan in 2012, said the IFC investment would help it expand
its courier service, which allows it to offer next-day delivery
of 900 brands of clothing, shoes and accessories to 25 cities.
Its investors include billionaire American industrialist
Leonard Blavatnik, Kinnevik, Summit Partners, JP Morgan
and German retail group Tengelmann.