HappyFresh raises fresh round of funding, more than US$12mil
By Chong Jinn Xiung August 29, 2016
- Investment by existing and new investors, led by Samena
- To focus on its primary markets of Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand
JAKARTA-headquartered online grocery platform HappyFresh said it successfully sealed a fresh round of funding led Samena Capital, a billion-dollar private equity fund based in Dubai and Hong Kong.
Existing investors Vertex Ventures, SinarMas Digital Ventures and Endeavor Catalyst also took part.
While it did not disclose the actual amount, HappyFresh said the sum was larger than the US$12 million it raised last September, which was one of South-East Asia’s largest Series A rounds.
That round was led by Vertex Ventures, the venture arm of Singapore-based Temasek Holdings, and Sinar Mas Digital Ventures, the early-stage investment arm of Sinarmas Group of Indonesia.
“We are quite excited about this new round of capital as we have new money coming in to support the company and buying into the vision of HappyFresh,” said its cofounder and chief executive officer Markus Bihler.
“It also shows the confidence of the lead investors from the last round,” he told Digital News Asia (DNA) in a phone interview.
“This round is not led by your classic venture capital fund, but by a classic private equity firm – Samena Capital is a traditional private equity fund with a stronghold in the offline retail, consumer as well as logistics sectors.
“I think it speaks to the maturity of the company and our clear focus on profitability and stability,” he added.
The investment will enable HappyFresh to concentrate on its three primary markets of Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand, the company said in an official statement.
“We are excited about the opportunities arising from new technologies and the fast-growing consumer class of South-East Asia,” said Samena Capital founder and vice chairman Shirish Saraf.
“We look forward to partnering with Markus [Bihler] and the team and to support them actively in taking the company to the next level, financially as well as organisationally,” he said in the statement.
Established in October 2014, HappyFresh has been operating since March 2015 and is positioned as an on-demand delivery player focused on fresh groceries.
The startup says it employs a pool of trained personal shoppers, drivers and customer service staff to offer its customers next-hour online grocery deliveries.
“We centralise our technology so that it is one single product that is rolled across the region,” Bihler (pic) told DNA.
He also that HappyFresh is constantly intensifying its “already deep relationship with retailers,” claiming it is the only such company in the industry to have full backend IT integration with the live feeds of data from its supermarket partners.
And while the on-demand and grocery delivery market in the region is heating up, Bihler said he actually welcomes the idea of more entrants.
“The larger growth potential of the industry is not taking market share from others but educating the public around using the online channel to shop for groceries,” he said.
“Everyone entering the market with a well-differentiated offer for customers to do something online with food is welcome, because it helps educate the public on the fact that you can shop for your groceries online,” he added.
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