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Logistics startup LetsTransport raises $12 mn in fresh funding: Report

Logistics startup LetsTransport raises $12 mn in fresh funding: Report
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Diptab Ventures Pvt. Ltd, which operates a tech-enabled logistics marketplace for intra-city deliveries called LetsTransport, has raised $12 million (around Rs 88 crore at current exchange rates) in a fresh funding round, according to a media report. 

Citing people in the know, The Economic Times reported that Fosun RZ Capital, the venture capital arm of Chinese conglomerate Fosun International, had led the investment with an infusion of $5 million. 

It added that more investors were likely to participate in the round.

Email queries sent to LetsTransport and Fosun RZ Capital’s India head and managing director Tej Kapoor did not elicit a response till the time of publishing this report.

The development comes months after VCCircle had reported that the company was planning to raise $15 million from new and existing investors and had appointed Mumbai-based Merisis Advisors as the investment banker for the fundraise.

Founded in 2015 by Indian Institute of Technology-Kharagpur graduates Pushkar Singh, Sudarshan Ravi and Ankit Parasher, LetsTransport provides intra-city logistics solutions for everyday errands such as shifting houses, buying furniture, electronics, among others. 

Customers can book a truck using the Bengaluru-based company’s online platform.

LetsTransport charges a base fare for the first few kilometres and then charges for every kilometre thereafter. The base fare and subsequent cost vary across cities.

LetsTransport offers its services to both individual users (business-to-consumer) and businesses (business-to-business) and is currently operational in Bengaluru, Delhi, Chennai, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Vijayawada and Tiruchirapalli.

In January last year, the company had raised $4 million (around Rs 27.2 crore) in its second round of funding from GMO Venture Partners, Neelesh Bhatnagar of NB Ventures and existing investor, Japanese venture capital firm Rebright Partners.

In August 2015, it had raised $1.3 million in a round led by Rebright Partners.

LetsTransport had acquired Shifter, a similar venture which connects mini-truck owners, for an undisclosed amount in 2015.

Deals in the space

There have been several deals in the logistics space in the recent past, with at last four being struck in past month alone.

Zinka Logistics Solutions Pvt. Ltd, which operates business-to-business tech-enabled logistics startup BlackBuck, had earlier this week raised Rs 202.96 crore ($27.4 million at current exchange rates) from new and existing investors.

Last week, Pune-based Ntex Transportation Services Pvt. Ltd, which runs logistics startup ElasticRun, raised close to Rs 60 crore ($8 million) from existing investors Norwest Venture Partners and Kalaari Capital.

Earlier this month, VCCircle had reported that the former India head of Germany’s Deutsche Post DHL Group had set up a logistics company and acquired a majority stake in a Kolkata-based firm to kickstart operations.

Similarly, logistics firm GoBolt recently raised Rs 40 crore ($5.5 million) in a Series A round from social-impact investment group Aavishkaar-Intellecap.

A TechCircle analysis of the tech-enabled logistics space revealed that the sector is now in a relatively stable phase after firms experimented with their business models and underwent course corrections.

Though there are a number of clear leaders in the space, achieving scale is the next step for companies in the sector.

Fosun

Fosun had backed another logistics startup, Gurugram-based Delhivery Pvt. Ltd, last year.

Its VC arm has a mandate to invest in technology companies in India, China and the US. The firm is focused on investing in companies in sectors such as financial technology, consumer technology, health technology, artificial intelligence (AI), Internet of Things (IoT) and automation, Ajay Lakhotia, partner at Fosun Kinzon Capital told VCCircle in an interaction in June last year.

Fosun Group entities have stepped up their investments in India over the last year.

In March 2017, Fosun had participated in online travel search engine ixigo’s $15 million Series B funding round, which was led by Sequoia Capital.

Fosun Group manages over $69 billion in assets with the majority of investments in real estate, infrastructure, pharma, banking and insurance sectors.

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