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Investors deliver India's Zepto $200M Series E

George Moriarty
Aug 25, 2023
Illustration of a grocery bag speeding into the frame.

Illustration: Gabriella Turrisi/Axios

Zepto, an India-based grocery delivery company, secured a $200 million Series E at a $1.4 billion valuation in a deal led by Stepstone Group, CEO Aadit Palicha tells Axios.

Driving the news: The two-year old company has grown rapidly, and has its eyes on a public offering in around 24 months.

How it works: "Proximity matters in India," Palicha says. So the company operates more than 200 warehouses throughout the seven cities it operates in order to deliver groceries in 10 minutes or less.

  • The self-described delivery-only supermarket works directly with CPG companies to source inventory.
  • Zepto currently operates in Mumbai, Delhi NCR, Bangalore, Chennai, Hyderabad, Pune, and Kolkata.

Zoom in: The company's executive team brings supply chain and operating experience, which Palicha says drives the strategy.

  • President Vinay Dhanani is ex-Flipkart and ITC Group, and CFO Ramesh Bafna previously worked at Myntra, Flipkart and Wipro.
  • Other execs come from Uber Eats, Tata Consumer Products, Johnson & Johnson and HSBC.

Details: Goodwater Capital joined Stepstone as a new investor, and they were joined by existing investors Glade Brook Capital, Nexus and Lachy Groom.

  • Palicha says the two-year old company's most recent valuation was $900 million in May 2022's $100 million raise.
  • Per PitchBook, this marks India's first unicorn of 2023.

What's next: Currently at a $650 million annual sales rate, the company is tracking towards being EBITDA positive in 12-15 months, and Palicha says they plan to go public in about 24 months, likely in India.

  • "We have enough capital to get to profitability and continue growing, but we may raise a pre-IPO — mainly secondary — to bring onboard institutional Indian investors before the IPO," Palicha says.
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