Bahrain’s alternative asset manager Investcorp has led an investment of about ₹80 crore in online fashion retailer Bewakoof.com.
Founded in 2011 by Prabhkiran Singh and Siddharth Munot, Bewakoof.com is a direct-to-consumer online fashion retailer that focuses mainly on theme-based T-shirts for young Indians. It has also branched out into other categories over the years, including hoodies and sweaters, joggers, pants and trousers, footwear, mobile covers, notebooks and backpacks. The firm sells most of its merchandise through its website and mobile application.
“Consumer and consumer technology is one of our primary investment theses in India, along with healthcare and financial services. Within the consumer-tech segment, we look for brands that are able to provide access at an affordable price point to Indian customers, and from that point of view, Bewakoof made sense to us," said Gaurav Sharma, co-head of private equity at Investcorp India, over the phone.
Investcorp provided nearly 90% of funding in the latest round and would hold around 14% in Bewakoof.com, along with a seat on the board.
“This is the first institutional funding round in the company. The firm has, so far, worked with very little capital and has focused on its bottomline as well as its topline. Therefore, it has been profitable for the last four years and is one of the few internet startups in the country to have done that," Sharma said.
He said the investment is in line with Investcorp’s strategy to tap sustainable business models.
The capital infusion will be used to invest in technology and to hire new talent.
“Our first focus will be to further strengthen our platform and capture consumer data to improve their experience on our website by using machine learning. We will be investing in our technology back-end, along with category expansion," said Bewakoof.com co-founder Prabhkiran Singh.