VilCart, the rural economy-focused technology startup, has raised USD 18 million (Rs 144 crore) from investors to expand operations.
The company raised this amount in a Series A funding round led by Asia Impact SA.
Nabventures Fund and Texterity Pvt Ltd also participated in the round, VilCart said in a statement.
With the use of this fund, VilCart aims to expand its operations to the entire South India by 2024.
VilCart, which was established in 2018 by Prasanna Kumar and Amith S Mali, seeks to revolutionise the rural unorganised retail industry with technology by providing quality products at a competitive price to every rural household with modern supply chain and logistic facilities.
The startup has established numerous private labels to utilise the established supply chain network and provide quality products to the rural population.
Currently, VilCart has reached 85,000 kirana stores in 30,000 villages, covering 29 districts in Karnataka and one each in Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu.
VilCart expanded its size to USD 25 million in FY22, up from USD 9.6 million in FY21, the statement said.
Prasanna Kumar, Founder, VilCart, said, "Strengthening the rural ecosystem is the need of the hour. VilCart aims to bridge the gap between rural consumers and the manufacturers/primary market by building a strong network. With the new investment, we aim to scale our operations to the entire South India."
Apart from being the sourcing, logistics, technology, marketing, and branding partner of rural kirana stores, VilCart offers a local language mobile app for rural kirana stores and consumers.
The app's artificial intelligence/machine learning capabilities help kirana store owners with better inventory management, and credit management, among other things.