Lenskart May Soon Enter the Unicorn Club with Investment from Kedaara
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Lenskart is reportedly set to enter the unicorn club with an investment round from private equity firm Kedaara capital, according to ET. The deal will, apparently, push the company’s valuation to $1 billion. The report also says existing investors including PremjiInvest and Chiratae Ventures will partially give up their stake.
The homegrown PE firm will reportedly invest for the first time in the consumer internet space.
Lenskart was founded in 2008 by Peeyush Bansal and Amit Chaudhary. Over the years it has battled slow growth, stagnation and losses and today, it is on the brink of becoming a unicorn.
It was also reported that Japanese conglomerate SoftBank was also planning to invest in Lenskart. Masayoshi Son led telecom giant which has a sterling reputation among investors is obsessed with technology and the majority of its investments have gone into tech startups itself. One doesn’t see any reason why Softbank which is backing almost all unicorns in India including Paytm, Zomato, Byju, Udaan, Swiggy, would back an upcoming too. In May, it was widely being reported that the next round of funding that will push the eye-glasses company into the coveted unicorn club will come from SoftBank.
Lenskart currently valued at US$400-$450 million has the backing of the likes of Ratan Tata, Steadview Capital, TR Capital, IDG Ventures, TPG Growth etc.
A Bumpy Ride
After incurring losses and slow growth, the firm rose up like a phoenix especially after it got the backing of Ratan Tata. The investment for that deal might be small but having the mentorship of the business scion helped Lenskart rise up like a phoenix by focusing on its sales and marketing. It also broke into the brick-and-mortar format soon after, a move that gave it a considerable rise. The tech focus company that delivers an omnichannel experience to consumers has also been planning to setup a store in tier III and IV cities where putting up an offline store.