Kurly raises $210 mil at $3.4 bil valuation in pre-IPO funding Korean food delivery platform may enter overseas markets for further growth

Translated by Kim So-in 공개 2021-12-07 08:07:32

이 기사는 2021년 12월 07일 08:05 더벨 유료페이지에 표출된 기사입니다.

Kurly Inc, an operator of South Korea's online grocery delivery service Market Kurly, has raised 250 billion won ($211 million) in its pre-initial public offering (IPO) funding at a valuation of nearly 4 trillion won from a foreign investor.

“Kurly pioneered the fast delivery market before competition among domestic e-commerce companies intensified,” said a financial investor of Kurly on Thursday. “It means that the firm has accumulated operational know-hows, which will help the company achieve additional growth if introduced into the overseas market.”

Kurly is also highlighting a possibility of overseas expansion using this competitiveness to its investors, added the investor. This is a reason why existing shareholders continue to own Kurly shares through the Series F funding round.

Kurly’s possible entrance into the overseas markets may push up its valuation during its planned listing next year. The company is reportedly seeking a valuation of more than 5 trillion won.

The Korean grocery delivery startup founder Sophie Kim has chosen Seoul as a listing venue, taking a U-turn from plans to float in New York where e-commerce giant Coupang made a successful stock market debut at the beginning of this year. Kurly aims to benefit from loosened listing standards after the Korea Exchange earlier this year eased listing requirements for Kospi.

Some investors of Kurly haven’t ruled out the possibility of an overseas listing. The company will continue to prepare for its market debut on the Korean market, but may change its listing venue to an overseas market where it can be valued higher, said an invetor.

The company is expected to heighten its value thanks to possible overseas expansion after being valued at 4.75 trillion won in the latest fundraising. Although its revenue sharply increased due to the Covid-19 pandemic last year, Kurly is not profitable yet as it operates in the domestic market only.

Amid fierce competition among local e-commerce companies, Kurly will likely achieve additional growth and boost its performance in the overseas market as it is equipped with an advanced logistics and cold chain storage system.

“Little is known internally about who invested 250 billion won in the latest fundraising,” an official at Kurly said. “Kim once mentioned possible entrance into the overseas market, but we are not at the stage where specific plans are made.” (Reporting by Seon-ho Kim)
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