Backed by angel investors like Ratan Tata and Kalyan Krishnamurthy, Urban Company is the twelfth Indian startup to join the unicorn club in 2021.
- Home services firm Urban Company is now valued at $2 billion after it raised $190-million through Prosus Ventures.
- Urban Company doubled its turnover from Rs 132.04 crore in FY19 to Rs 263 crore for FY20.
- The latest fundraise by Urban Company also saw the participation of two new investors – DF International and Wellington Management.
- The company aims to expand its workforce and meet the increasing demands on home service through the fresh funding.
On-demand home service provider Urban Company recently picked up funds worth $190 million in a fresh funding round led by Prosus Ventures (formerly known as Naspers), as per regulatory filings accessed via Tofler. This latest round of capital infusion takes Urban Company into the coveted unicorn club as it was last valued at around $933 million during its funding round in 2019. Rebranding itself the company changed its name from Urban Clap to Urban Company as it attracts wider global appeal.
About the Funding
According to the filings, Prosus has invested $61.93 million, DF International $37 million, and Wellington Management $33.2 million, giving them a 3.18 per cent, 1.90 per cent, and 1.7 per cent stake, respectively. Tiger, Steadview Capital, Vy Capital and others also participated in the round.
The official filings also show Urban Company allotted 2,613 equity shares and 50,490 Series F preference shares at an issue price of INR 265,553.1 apiece to raise around $190 million. This brings us to see the pattern of their investments and acquisitions. With their growing business, the company made revenues of around INR 216 crore in FY20, up from INR 106 crore in FY19.
Watch: Indian Startups make their way to the Unicorn Club early on in 2021
The Plan Ahead
Looking at the steady growth, Urban Company is going aggressive on their hiring spree with the fresh funding. They are looking to onboard over 20,000 professionals on its platform this year to meet the strong growth in demand for various services post the lockdown. Currently, the company has more than 40,000 gig workers on its platform, of which over 35,000 are present in India.
Looking at the severity of the second wave of Covid-19, the top management decided to cover vaccination costs for its all service partners. They also laid plans to collaborate with local government authorities and healthcare providers to ensure that its all service partners are completely vaccinated as soon as they can.
Focusing on consumer and labor rights, Urban Company is one of the few companies who right away block customers who discriminate against service providers in any manner. This led to receiving a score of 8 out of 10 in the Fairwork India Ratings 2020: Labour Standards in the Platform Economy. On the other hand, other reputed start-ups like Swiggy, Zomato and Uber, received score of 1 out of 10 due to their lenient policy.
Joining the Unicorn Club
The total number of unicorns for the current year has surpassed that of the last year when the country produced 11 such entities. Urban Company is the latest to join this club along with Meesho, CRED, PharmEasy, Groww, Sharechat, Gupshup, and Chargebee, Digit Insurance, InnovAccer, Infra Market and Five Star Finance. Ever-evolving and expanding startups like Zerodha, Paytm, Zomato, OYO Rooms, Byju’s are few companies that made to the heights of being valued more than a billion are a part of the unicorn club of India.You will find more infographics at Statista
Urban Company: Lockdown’s go-to Platform
Graduates of IIT Kanpur, Abhiraj Bahl, Raghav Chandra and Varun Khaitan founded the company in 2014 in New Delhi. The company operates an online marketplace for urban lifestyle services. Through their website and mobile app they find and hire services such as home service and repair, beauty and wellness services, business services, personal services. They earn a commission based on each transaction made through its platform.
With the pandemic restricting movement, the demand for such services has increased. Till now, the company has more than five million customers and 25,000 trained professionals registered on the platform. They have their active presence in 30 megacities such as Mumbai, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Delhi. They are also present in smaller cities like Patna, Raipur, Bhopal and Vijaywada. Tapping the international market, Urban Company is actively running their business in Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Riyadh, Sharjah, Singapore and Sydney.