FirstCry, India based online store for baby products, launched the largest Thrasio-style investment venture. As per reports, the company has received $75 million in capital investments from TPG, Premji Invest, Japan’s SoftBank, and ChrysCapital. Global Bees will consolidate, buy and fast-track the growth of those brands that put out their products for sale on eCommerce marketplaces.
Global Bees, according to reports, will acquire 30-40 direct-to-consumer firms over the next four years. It plans to invest around $2-$6 million in each of these firms. It will leverage the deep consumer insights that investors and founders have gained to help them grow. Further, Global Bees plans to acquire brands across different categories, and it will not limit it to Firstcry’s children’s category.
A person close to the company said small-scale brands do not have the digital marketing and branding bandwidth. These small companies often do not have the logistical support, warehousing, and product development know-how that bigger ventures can provide. Global Bees will either buy out or will pick up a controlling stake in these small companies to work alongside the founders. As per sources, Nitin Agarwal will be heading Global Bees. Nitin was the former Group CIO, President, Chief Digital Officer, and CTO at Edelweiss Financial Services.
According to some reports, few former entrepreneurs and investors have started their versions of the Thrasio-like platform. Ananth Narayanan, former chief executive of Medlife and Myntra, is also beginning his platform. Falcon Edge, Norwest Venture Partners, and Accel have committed $25 million to the venture.
Currently, India sees an uptick in smaller brands. Around 8,50,000 vendors are selling on Amazon India; out of them, around 4,152 have crossed about Rs 1 crore in sales in 2020. On Flipkart, there are around 350,000, out of which 70 have crossed the Rs 1 crore mark.
This model was first popularised by the largest acquirer of third-party label businesses on Amazon by US-based Thrasio. The same is currently picking up pace in India. Approximately half a dozen of investors in India are already set to start ventures to acquire and grow companies in an e-commerce marketplace.
Thrasio buys third-party category-leading private label businesses on Amazon and optimizes, onboards, and operates them. The company has earned blistering organic growth rates through product development, best-in-class marketing, supply chain management, and operations.
Within three years of launch, Thrasio consolidated and scaled up about 100 brands on Amazon. According to reports, the company raised $1.7 billion across equity and is worth $3-$4 billion.