While the company had started pilot projects in 15 new cities in September last year, nine did not yield the desired results forcing the firm to wind up operations in Ludhiana, Bhopal, Kochi, Coimbatore and Visakhapatnam, among others, as per this report.
“We ran a series of marketing campaigns including television ads in these cities to test the markets and see if the volume picks up,” said Albinder Dhindsa, Co-founder and CEO. But it did not see any reaction to the marketing effort were selected for the withdrawal of operations. “The smaller cities are not ready for hyperlocal business yet. Once they are, we will reconsider our strategy,” he added.
Grofers said that the team of 20-30 people employed in these cities are being relocated.
The company was started in 2013 by Albinder Dhindsa and Saurabh Kumar. It had a bumper year of investments in 2015 as it raised a total US$165 million in three tranches, which indicates that there is no cash crunch in the firm.
The company started the year of 2015 with US$10 million funding in February, followed by a Series B round of US$35 million in April — both came from Tiger Global and Sequoia Capital.
Most recently, it raised US$120 million in November led by Japan’s SoftBank Corp. The round also saw participation from existing investors and Apoletto Managers, a personal fund managed by DST Global’s partners.