It has been barely forty days since we started the new year with happiness, hopes, and resolutions, and the year has proven happier for India. The country has already added not just one or two, but seven startups to the list of unicorns this year.
The arrival of Xpressbees to the list of unicorns is yet another piece of good news for the country's celebrations. Yes! Xpressbees has made it to the list of unicorns after it raised funding in an investment round led by private equity funds Blackstone Growth, TPG Growth, and ChrysCapital.
The year 2021 was a big year for the country as lots of companies went for their Initial Public Offerings (IPOs) and startups turned into unicorns. This year seems to have started on a high note.
What is a Unicorn Club?
The term “Unicorn” is used in the venture capital industry to describe a privately held startup company with a valuation of over $ one billion. It was first coined by venture capitalist Aileen Lee in 2013.
Xpressbees is an e-commerce company that aims to provide logistics solutions. It was founded by Amitava Saha and Supam Maheshwari in 2015. The company offers comprehensive last-mile delivery, reverse logistics, payment collection, drop shipping, vendor management, and cross-border services to the clients. The legal name of the company is Busy bees Logistics Solution Private Limited. The inventors of Xpressbees include; Chirantae Ventures, InnoVen Capital, and Alibaba Group.
According to the website, In 2021, the company handled 3 million shipments per day.
The company’s website also states, “We are the fastest growing express logistics service provider in India, catering to end-to-end supply chain solutions.” This, for us, is not just a corporate brand-building cliché but a fact. The one we are very proud of. Since our inception, we have seen nearly 100% growth in revenue on a year-to-year basis.
The company has over 3,000 thousand offices and service centers, more than 52 cargo airports, around 500 customer care executives, and around 35,000 field executives.
How did Xpressbees become Unicorns?
Xpressbees achieved the milestone after it raised fresh funding led by private equity funds Blackstone Growth, TPG Growth, and ChrysCapital.
According to the press statement, “ The $300 million Series F funding round, which includes a secondary component, also saw participation from existing investors.” With this, the total amount of capital raised by the startup has gone up to $500 million.
“Our new partners will further fuel our efforts in pursuing new opportunities,” said Amitava Saha, Founder, and CEO of Xpressbees.
Akshay Tanna, a partner at TPG Growth, said, “As the Indian e-commerce market continues to grow, the need for end-to-end supply chain solutions that can meet the needs of diversified customers across industries has never been more pronounced.”
Mukesh Mehta, Senior Management Director, Blackstone Private Equity, also said, “ We look forward to leveraging Blackstone's deep expertise and global network in logistics and e-commerce to accelerate Xpressbees’s growth.”
The company is looking to grow into a full-service logistic organization, support the business in its next phase of growth, develop products,s and hire talent. It has experienced close to 100% growth in revenue on a Y-o-Y basis and is planning to expand its footprint across the country.
The Rain of Unicorns
It is raining happily with unicorns in India. According to a parliamentary economic survey, “India has eighty-three startup unicorns with a total valuation of $277.77 billion as of January 14, 2022. The content added a record of forty-four unicorn startups in 2021, overtaking the UK to emerge as the third highest country in the number of unicorns after the US with 487 unicorns and China with 301 unicorns.”
Another report by Fortune India on startup in India, says, “India may see as many as 45 unicorns in the next 12-14 months as more customers move to digital services offered by new-age companies, nudging investors to bet on the country’s growing league of startups.”
Xpressbees is the eighth startup of the year to become a unicorn. The other startups that became unicorns this year include Mamaearth, Fractal Darwinbox, Deal Share, Elastic Run, Livspace, and LEAD School. At this rate, India will soon overtake the US and China in the list of unicorns. It is already predicted that more than fifty startups could join the unicorn club by the end of the year. It is exciting and happy for the country as it gives competition to the developed countries.
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