Naspers and Meituan invest $100 million in Indian delivery business, Swiggy

The Indian food delivery startup Swiggy has raised $100 million in its latest round of funding.

Led by the global investment and media conglomerate, Naspers, with participation from the Chinese e-commerce company Meituan-Dianping, the investment is an indicator that the Indian technology market is hitting its stride.

The company said that it will use the funding to introduce new products and services and further expand its supply chain business, New Supply, which launched late last year.

The first product from New Supply, was Swiggy Access, which offered kitchen space as a service to select restaurants so they could expand their geographic reach in cities across India. And Swiggy has also gotten into restaurant financing through a partnership with an Indian fintech company.

“We want to continue to bring convenience, choice and reliability to our users as we fulfil our mission of ‘Changing the Way India Eats’,” said Sriharsha Majety, Swiggy’s chief executive, in a statement. “With this funding, we will further invest in building differentiated offerings, plugging the white spaces in the ecosystem, and developing our technology while keeping superlative customer experience at the core.”

The Indian company has now raised $255 million, with a previous $70 million round also led by Naspers to launch Swiggy into markets across India. Part of that capital also went to acquire the gourmet Indian food startup 48East.

Previous investors in Swiggy include Harmony Partners, Accel Partners,  Norwest Venture Partners, Bessemer Venture Partners, and Softbank’s SAIF Partners.

“Swiggy has continued strong growth through 2017 and now has a clear lead in the market,” said Larry Illg the chief executive of Naspers Ventures, in a statement. “The company’s performance is all the more impressive given the intense competition we see in the food ordering and delivery business in India. Swiggy has shown it has the ability to rise above the competition and create long-term relationships with its users.”

The company works with restaurants across ten locations in India, including Delhi, NCR, Mumbai, Pune, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Bengaluru, Chennai, Ahmedabad and Chandigarh.

Naspers has placed a big bet on the global food delivery and logistics market. The company’s other investments include a €387 million ($421.3 million) in the online food ordering and delivery business Delivery Hero and a commitment of over $120 million to the Latin American food delivery service iFood (a subsidiary of Movile). In all, Naspers has committed $1 billion to food delivery companies globally.

“Expansion into food delivery is consistent with our strategy to invest in platforms with global potential that offer online marketplace services in high growth markets,” Illg wrote to me in an email. “Food delivery is a global phenomenon and presents an attractive market for Naspers. It is a large, under-penetrated and growing market with potential for success across a broad range of geographies that we know well.”