India's Bigbasket valued at over $1 billion in fresh funding round

BENGALURU (Reuters) - A group of investors, including South Korea-based Mirae-Naver and China’s Alibaba Group, led a $150 million funding round in online grocery company Bigbasket, valuing the startup at over $1 billion, the Indian company said on Monday.

Bigbasket, which sells everything from groceries and fresh produce to pet food, competes with Inc and Walmart Inc’s e-commerce unit Flipkart in many categories.

Supermarket Grocery Supplies Private Ltd, which owns Bigbasket, will use the proceeds for expansion and to scale up the online grocer’s supply chain, the company said. Launched in 2011, Bigbasket operates across 25 Indian cities.

The Bengaluru-headquartered firm has been investing in warehousing and logistics as well as in expanding its delivery network to smaller towns and cities as it fights to keep its lead in a complex but fast-growing grocery business.

Mirae Asset-Naver Asia Growth Fund and Alibaba were joined by the UK government’s development finance institution, CDC Group, in the funding round, Bigbasket said.

Alibaba became the biggest shareholder in Bigbasket last year, after it led a $300 million funding round in the company, stepping up its competition with Amazon.

Bigbasket Chief Executive Hari Menon had then said it expected to break even between 2020 and 2022.

Reporting by Chris Thomas in Bengaluru; Editing by Gopakumar Warrier and Sherry Jacob-Phillips