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S Korea’s grocery delivery startup Kurly raises $200m at $2.2bn valuation



south korean kurly 200m series Kurly Inc, the operator of South Korea’s leading mobile grocery app “Market Kurly“, announced raising $200 million in a Series F funding round at a $2.2-billion post-money valuation.

The funding round was led by the startup’s existing investors, including Aspex Management, DST Global, Sequoia Capital China, and Hillhouse Capital. New investors, including Millenium Management and CJ Logistics Corporation, also participated in the Series F.

Kurly, founded in 2015, said it will use the new capital to invest in advancing its proprietary technology and top talent while adding new customers through the expansion of overnight delivery services and to continue innovating Korea’s fast-growing mobile grocery market.

The funding round followed the startup’s $160-million Series E funding led by DST Global in 2020, making Kurly one of South Korea’s tech unicorns.

The company said it generated $845 million in annual sales in 2020, marking a 124% year-over-year growth. It believes that margins will also continue to grow as it achieves scale and operational efficiency while offering quality products and services.

With the fresh funding, Kurly also plans to invest in its logistics infrastructure and the expansion of its geographical footprint.

In March 2021, the company established its logistics facilities at Gimpo fulfillment center, the largest temperature-controlled logistics center in Korea to date, which has allowed the startup to procure more than twice as much order volume as before.

“This funding round is a testament to Kurly’s contributions in transforming customer’s everyday habit of conducting grocery shopping at physical
stores into a more convenient way of shopping online by offering a superior selection of products through its innovative delivery service,” said Seul-A Kim, CEO and founder of Kurly.

He added that the company has also been successful in bringing merchandise to the customers at a reasonable price through service technology empowered by the use of its proprietary data analytics.

“We are delighted to have new capital which would allow us to further invest in logistics infrastructure, people, and technology to continue to innovate mobile grocery market and improve lives of consumers, producers, and workers,” Kim said.