Retail ecommerce start-up Jumbotail raises $14.2m

  • January 26, 2021
  • Steve Rogerson

Indian new-retail start-up Jumbotail has raised $14.2m in its series B3 round following $11m raised in October’s B2 round.

Jumbotail is an online wholesale marketplace and new-retail platform for grocery and food items, serving more than 30,000 kirana (mom-and-pop grocery) stores via its full stack ecommerce model.

With more than 95% of India’s $450bn food and grocery market flowing through over 12 million kirana stores, these stores are the tried-and-true economic engine of India. But when the Covid-19 pandemic hit, traditional supply chains serving these stores ground to a screeching halt.

“Jumbotail’s ecommerce marketplace and its highly resilient supply chain, built on a proprietary in-house technology platform, allowed the company to serve its customers every single day of the lockdown, thereby winning the trust of thousands of mom-and-pop retailers as well as that of hundreds of FMCG brands,” said Ashish Jhina, co-founder and COO of Jumbotail.

Newly launched venture capital firm VII Ventures led the funding round, which will allow Jumbotail to scale its business to new geographies, expand its private label portfolio, partner with more FMCG brands and grow its network of J24 modern convenience omnichannel grocery stores in partnership with mom-and-pop entrepreneurs.

“The food and grocery industry is one that was completely upended by the Covid-19 pandemic and subsequent lockdowns, and yet Jumbotail has continued to grow and execute at extraordinary levels,” said Chadi Hajjar, managing director at VII Ventures. “We believe in the company’s vision and have been impressed by the rapid growth of their business in such a short time span. Jumbotail has huge potential and scalability for domestic and international growth, and we look forward to working with them in the next step of their journey.”

Jumbotail, founded in 2015 by Stanford Business School classmates Karthik Venkateswaran and Ashish Jhina, operates a food and grocery ecosystem consisting of an online marketplace that connects kiranas with FMCG brands and food manufacturers, a supply chain and logistics platform, a fintech platform for SME lending, and a retail platform that powers its J24 branded convenience grocery stores. The company has raised $40m prior to its current fundraise.

“The VII Ventures team has shown great conviction, and a solid understanding of our business,” said Venkateswaran, CEO of Jumbotail. “The fund’s investment directors are successful entrepreneurs with deep experience in building and scaling businesses. We are excited to partner with them and learn from their expertise to help scale Jumbotail to the next level.”

Hajjar added: At VII Ventures, we look for people, products and platforms that aim to harness technology to solve the world’s biggest problems. Despite all of the disruption the world has seen over the last year, we are optimistic for the future. We have an excellent pipeline of opportunities that we believe will drive long-term growth and success. I feel confident that the firm will continue to grow and thrive in 2021, and I am excited about the chance we have to help world-changing companies move forward.”