Fung family takes US$35 million stake in ShopX

The Fung family has invested US$35 million in Indian technology platform ShopX.

The funds came from Fung Strategic Holdings a member of Fung Investments, the private investment vehicle of the families of Dr Victor Fung and Dr William Fung.

ShopX is described as India’s leading B2B e-commerce company, connecting India’s consumers and small merchants with brands and suppliers directly to purchase products and services.

India’s retail market is estimated to reach US$1.1 trillion by 2020, and small-to-medium sized businesses play an important role in the Indian economy, making up about 90 per cent of the retail sector. Until now, they largely remain ‘offline’ in small villages and towns serving the local surrounding population.

ShopX, founded by Amit Sharma and Apoorva Jois in May 2015, aims to be the preeminent e-commerce platform serving more than 12 million small merchants across India, enabling everything from ordering to delivery, payments and localised customer support. ShopX already covers 50,000 retailers in more than 300 locations across India.

Nandan Nilekani, a leading entrepreneur, has been an early investor in ShopX, supporting the company from inception with more than $18 million in personal investment and active mentorship.

“The ShopX model provides small retailers access to the same cutting-edge technology and supply chain solutions as any established e-commerce or organised retailer,” he said.

“This access provides an onboarding ramp into the formal economy for millions of India’s small retailers and the next 400 million consumers. ShopX has been built on scalable and sound business principles like platform thinking, capital efficiency and a sustainable growth model. We are very excited to welcome the Fung Group into ShopX, and look forward to expanding the platform with their investment and strategic synergies.”

Victor Fung added: “This is one of a series of investments the Fung Group and its companies are making to advance new, disruptive technologies shaping the future of retail and supply chain. ShopX is combining technology and an innovative business model to transform the traditional retail model in India. Given the country’s sheer population size and rising consumer spending power, not only do we see tremendous opportunity in India, but also the successful application of this model to other parts of the region.”

Tech focus

The ShopX investment follows recent Fung Group initiatives and investments in new technologies including:

  • A partnership with Tencent-backed WeDoctor to create an e-commerce platform connecting China’s myriad of hospitals with medical device manufacturers and service providers to centrally procure medical devices, consumables and services.
  • A partnership with JD.com to develop AI-driven retail solutions.
  • new innovation lab with Shima Seiki, the Japanese company behind the world’s most advanced computerised flat knitting machines, to conduct specialised materials R&D.

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