South Korea’s Kurly wins funds for expansion

Kurly, a South Korea-based grocery-delivery startup, has netted Series E funding totalling KRW200 billion (US$160 million).

The funding round for the five-year-old company was led by DST Global, with additional participation from several existing backers – including Hillhouse Capital, Sequoia Capital China, Fuse Venture Partners, SK Networks and Translink Capital. Newcomer Aspex Management also contributed to the new financing.

Total funding in Kurly has now reached KRW420 billion won ($328 million), confirming unicorn status for the venture. The company expects to use the funding to set up a new fulfillment centre in Seoul, more than twice as large as its current facilities.

“Kurly has been showing incomparable growth in the fast-expanding online grocery market,” said DST Global investment partner and head of Asia Pacific John Lindfors, “and as the first to establish morning deliveries, has demonstrated its ability to disrupt the logistics industry and change the grocery shopping habits of Korean consumers”. 

The firm recorded annual average revenue growth of 3.5 times since opening, and extended its fulfillment capability area by a factor of 4.9 last year, with a 2.9 times increase in total deliveries.


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