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Exclusive | FirstCry’s Thrasio-style venture GlobalBees acquires D2C startup andMe

GlobalBees had raised $150 million in a mix of equity and debt, led by FirstCry and some of the parent company’s other investors in July. The startup, andMe, was bought for about Rs 30 crore.

August 18, 2021 / 11:57 AM IST
Image: Shutterstock

Image: Shutterstock

FirstCry’s GlobalBees has acquired women’s health startup ‘andMe’ through a mix of cash and equity, sources in the know of the development told Moneycontrol.

According to sources, GlobalBees bought the company for about Rs 30 crore, which is 5 times its valuation in the financial year 2020. The startup was valued at over Rs 6 crore, as per its filing with the Ministry of Corporate Affairs.

Ankur Goyal and Sheta Mittal founded Merhaki Foods, the parent company of andMe, in 2017. The Bengaluru-based direct-to-consumer (D2C) company operates in the women’s health segment and offers beverages and food products for period care, PCOS etc.

Who will benefit what?

Post-acquisition, andMe founders will be getting equity in the form of ESOPs, while all other investors will be cashing out. Matrix Partners India and Consumer VC Fund Sauce.vc are some of the investors in the company.

Sources said the company’s co-founder Ankur Goyal will stay with the company and lead the food and wellness vertical for GlobalBees.

GlobalBees, FirstCry’s Thrasio-style venture, had raised $150 million in July in a mix of equity and debt led by FirstCry and some of the unicorn’s other investors such as Chiratae Ventures, SoftBank, Chrys Capital, Lightspeed Venture Partners and Premji Invest.

Thrasio model of acquisition

AndMe is GlobalBees’ first acquisition. It plans to acquire about 30-40 D2C companies in the segments of food and nutrition, beauty and personal care, lifestyle etc.

The Thrasio model, though a novelty in India, has gained steam, of late, in the start-up ecosystem. The model has been popularised by US-based company Thrasio, founded by Joshua Silberstein and Carlos Cashman, in 2018. The company acquires sellers on Amazon in the consumer products space and helps them scale up.

The model has caught the imagination of start-up founders and investors in India. On August 17, UpSacalio, another company operating under the model, raised $42.5 million in Series A investments from Presight Capital and a global hedge fund. Mensa Brands, G.O.A.T. Brand Labs and 10club are some of the other companies operating in the segment.

The FirstCry story

FirstCry was founded by Supam Maheshwari, Amitava Saha, Prashant Jadhav and Sanket Hattimattur as an online platform for baby products in 2010. The company turned a unicorn in February 2020 after receiving $300 million funding from SoftBank Vision Fund. According to a report by The Economic Times in March this year, private equity firms TPG, Premji Invest and ChrysCapital invested around $100 million each into FirstCry, taking its valuation to $1.9-$2.1 billion.
Devika Singh
first published: Aug 18, 2021 11:57 am