Canaan Partners Invests in Naaptol (?) [Confirmed]

Canaan Partners will announce investment in Naaptol (our review), and as per this report, Canaan Partners will acquire 25% stake in Naaptol for INR 40 crores (i.e. valuation of 160 crores,  which seems quite high).

Earlier, BCCL picked up stake in Naaptol and the company now clocks 3,000 transactions/day and sells 500 brands on its ecommerce platform.

Naaptol started as a comparison engine (monetized via affiliate route) and now carries transactions as well. Company’s growth, it seems is driven by the sudden upsurge of brands (on the lines of *BlackCherries*).

As far as the funding is concerned, I just had a word with Alok Mittal and he mentioned that the numbers aren’t correct at all.

Update: It seems the news itself isnt correct, as per my conversation with Alok.

We have seen this earlier as well, i.e. VC firms denying reports of investment and then they make a formal PR announcing the deal. Hence, the article will be updated with numbers, as soon as we get them.

Recommended Read: ecommerce in India – The Misunderstood Indian Internet User and our earlier series on ecommerce in India.

Final Update: The deal is done. Here is the press release from Canaan.

New Delhi, INDIA, August 18, 2010: Naaptol, a leading home shopping platform in India, today announced the closing of Series A round of Venture Capital funding from Canaan Partners, a multibillion-dollar, global, venture capital firm.

Naaptol is the fastest growing company in the home shopping space and offers services over multiple touch points including print, TV and internet.  Currently, Naaptol has a pan India reach of over 200M households and facilitates fulfillment and delivery through its nationwide logistics tie ups.  Naaptol has developed robust technology to facilitate all aspects of home shopping including interfacing with multiple suppliers, multiple logistics partners, multiple media partners and being able to provide effective customer support.

The home shopping space in India is poised to grow rapidly driven by several factors including a growing middle class that is increasingly demanding more lifestyle products, lack of significant choice in retail beyond the top cities, and the convenience of shopping from home.  With TV penetration as high as 125 million households and internet users approaching close to 100 Million, home shopping is expected to take significant share of the retail shopping market.

Mr. Manu Agarwal, CEO Naaptol said, “Naaptol is a platform that brings together buyers, sellers as well as media companies to facilitate shopping from home. We are delighted to work with a leading Venture Fund like Canaan Partners and the capital raised will be applied directly to enhancing our capabilities and expanding into multiple media formats.  We are looking to partner with leading media houses in the country to grow the home shopping category.”

Commenting on the investment, Alok Mittal, Managing Director- Canaan Partners India said, “Building a leading home shopping platform requires capital in the range of Rs 150 Crores and Canaan Partners will contribute a significant piece of this. This is our first investment in the home shopping space in India, and we are looking forward to the difference Naaptol is set to make.”

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