Market Kurly, a fast-growing grocery delivery startup, announced on May 8 that it has attracted 200 billion won ($164.3 million) in Series E funding.
Led by investment firm DST Global, a group of global investors, including Hillhouse Capital, Sequoia Capital China, Fuse Venture Partners, SK Networks and Translink Capital and Aspex Management participated in the new round of funding. The Series E brings the South Korean startup’s total funding to 420 billion won.
Market Kurly CEO Sophie Kim (Market Kurly)
The new funding round came amid dampened investment sentiment due to the new coronavirus pandemic that has been ravaging the global economy. Many of planned investment deals have gone down the drain as investors concerned over a potential liquidity crunch have tried to keep cash on hand.
While many offline businesses struggling, e-commerce and delivery services companies have been catapulted into the limelight during the lockdown across South Korea due to the ongoing coronavirus crisis. As consumers have avoided shopping for groceries at brick-and-mortar stores during the lockdown, sales at online grocery stores have grown significantly.
From 2015 to 2019, Market Kurly saw its sales jump 3.5 times to 428.9 billion won. The shipment volume increased 2.9 times on-year last year as it beefed up its logistics capability.
The company said it will spend the new investment to install advanced logistics systems, expand the customer base and hire talented people.
“The latest funding is an achievement that the company has made together with its customers and employees during this difficult time,” said Market Kurly CEO Sophie Kim, adding that “the company will improve its online grocery shopping services, in terms of quality and quality, to meet expectations of customers.”
Founded in 2015, the Seoul-based startup has begun a dawn delivery service through which the firm delivers food products by 7 a.m. if customers place orders before 11 p.m.
By Kim Young-won (firstname.lastname@example.org)