[Funding alert] Bengaluru-based commerce startup Niki.ai raises investment from EMVC, existing investors
Bengaluru-based commerce platform Niki.ai has raised an undisclosed amount as part of its Series A funding round led by EMVC. Existing investors including Ratan Tata, Ronnie Screwvala’s Unilazer Ventures, Haresh Chawla, and Japan’s Recruit Partners also participated in this round.
The funds raised will be used to boost the growth of various verticles present on Niki’s commerce platform, as well as, to add new languages including Marathi, Gujarati, and Telugu.
Speaking on the investment, Melissa Frakman, Founder and Managing Partner at EMVC, said,
“EMVC invested in Niki as it is building a new category for Bharat. It is delivering online services to Tier II - Tier IV users leveraging deep tech, which is made in India AI. Further, Niki is changing the commerce landscape of India by unlocking a completely new userbase for 1,000’s of service provider companies.”
Over the last year, Niki claims to have fulfilled nearly one million transactions. The company also claims the Gross Merchandise Value (GMV) of the platform will hit an annualised run rate of $100 million by March 2020.
The platform currently supports vernacular languages such as Hindi, Bengali, and Tamil on its platform.
To further catalyse growth, Niki is also in discussions with other institutions to raise a growth financing round of $20-30 million early next year.
“Since realigning our focus to cater directly to language-first consumers, we have seen brand virality and 30 percent monthly growth. We are on a mission to build the most trusted app to avail services online for new internet users, and seize a $750 billion opportunity. Our conversational voice AI is built in-house and is part of the platform’s differentiation. We aim to grow this to $1 billion GMV by 2021,” Sachin Jaiswal, CEO and Co-founder of Niki, said.
At present, Niki’s platform is operational in four Indian languages and will be adding seven more languages in the next 12 months.
It will also go deeper into smaller towns and cities by adding 25,000 more Tier II and IV locations by March 2020, to build on the 18,000 localities in its current footprint across the Hindi belt of India.
(Edited by Suman Singh)