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IDGVI News: Portfolio News

PremjiInvest invests about Rs 200 crore in eyewear portal Lenskart

By Madhav Chanchani & Biswarup Gooptu | ET Bureau, September 7, 2016

BENGALURU: Early stage investor IDG Ventures India will earn handsome returns as it sells a portion of its holding in eyewear portal Lenskart to Wipro chairman Azim Premji's family office — PremjiInvest — which has invested about Rs 200 crore in the Delhi-based company.

PremjiInvest, through its entity PI Opportunities Fund-II, has subscribed to fresh shares worth Rs 65 crore in the company at a valuation of Rs 1,800 crore or $270 million. "The remaining amount has been used to buy shares from IDG Ventures," said two people aware of the deal. With this round, Premji joins other Indian corporate leaders like Ratan Tata, Infosys co-founder Kris Gopalakrishnan and Ronnie Screwvala as investors in Lenskart.

Cloudcherry founding team

IDG Ventures first invested in the company at a valuation of about $10 million in late 2011. ET first reported PremjiInvest's plans to pick up stake in Lenskart in its August 22 edition. Avendus Capital advised Lenskart on the transaction. Lenskart mopped up Rs 400 crore in May from World Bank arm IFC, Swiss investment firm Adveq, TPG Growth and IDG Ventures. This deal is not the first bet by PremjiInvest in online retail, as it has earlier picked up stakes in Snapdeal and Myntra (which soon merged with Flipkart), striking both deals in the first few months of 2014.

The firm has also backed other consumer and retail brands like Fabindia and Future Lifestyle Fashions. Lenskart is aggressively building an omni-channel play to compete with the Tata Group's Titan, which in turn is looking to sell eyewear online.

"The reason why we raised capital from PremjiInvest even after closing our round in May is that they are very seasoned retail investors," said Lenskart founder Peyush Bansal in a statement. "PremjiInvest can continue to be an investor even when we go public in the next 3-4 years." Lenskart has 200 stores, where customers can book orders with an option of delivery at home or pick up at the store.

The company charges a franchisee fee and pays a commission to store owner on each sale, while it manages the inventory and customer experience on its own. The company plans to expand to 400 stores by the end of year. Lenskart currently has annualised revenue run rate of over Rs 350 crore, with a target of reaching Rs 2,500 crore in the next four years. It expects offline channels to contribute to 50% of the revenues in the next two years.