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CityMall raises $22.5 million in Series B funding led by General Catalyst & Jungle Ventures

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Founded in 2019 by Angad Kikla and Naisheel Verdhan, CityMall is a community-based e-commerce platform targeted at consumers in tier 2, tier 3 and tier 4 towns in India.

CityMall, an India-based community e-commerce venture, has raised $22.5 Million as part of its Series B funding round. The investment is led by General Catalyst and Jungle Ventures with participation from existing investors Accel, Elevation Capital and WaterBridge Ventures. CityMall will use the fresh funds towards hiring, technology and building their own logistics network, including warehouses and hubs. Further, the company intends to strengthen its presence in the existing 40 towns in its network and aims to expand its reach to 100 new towns in the coming months.​
Founded in 2019 by Angad Kikla and Naisheel Verdhan, CityMall is a community-based e-commerce platform targeted at consumers in tier 2, tier 3 and tier 4 towns in India. CityMall also provides income opportunities to a network of micro-entrepreneurs called community leaders. The community leaders play a pivotal role in providing access to affordable products and services to the new to internet consumers living in these small towns and villages. In less than a year, CityMall claims to have pioneered a new community-led, distribution channel tailored for these consumers.
CityMall also claims its simple, intuitive platform makes it easy to onboard community leaders, open virtual stores for them and aggregate demand through white-labelled mobile app and WhatsApp. The app also gamifies their journey, ensuring high retention and engagement both from community leaders and customers. Recently, the company has evolved its offerings horizontally, by expanding beyond daily-use products like groceries and FMCG products, into fashion, electronics, electrical appliances, cosmetics and more.
According to Angad Kikla, Co-founder, CityMall, “Internet has transformed the lives of consumers living in large metro cities. However, for low to mid-income users in small towns like Rewari, the use of the internet is limited to content and social. We are building CityMall with a vision to transform their experience with the internet - by providing them with access to earning opportunities as well as affordable products and services. CityMall is pioneering a unique community-led e-commerce channel of distribution targeted at Bharat users.”
Naisheel Verdhan, Co-founder, CityMall added, "Our vision is to build a decentralised e-commerce ecosystem for the next 200-300 million Internet users living in small towns and villages. While our app gamifies the journey of community leaders and provides them with technology and consumer analytics to run and grow their virtual digital stores, the customer app offers a super-simple and personalised buying experience for end consumers."
Through its community group buying model, the start-up has been able to disrupt the two biggest cost items for traditional e-commerce platforms - customer acquisition cost and logistics cost.
Commenting on the fundraise, Alex Tran, Partner, General Catalyst, said: "As internet penetration reaches beyond metros and into smaller cities and communities, new and innovative social commerce models like CityMall have the potential to offer consumers better buying experiences through the right assortment, price points, and support while democratising entrepreneurship opportunities for millions. We are proud to partner with the CityMall team to build an enduring company serving the next few hundred million consumers in India."
Amit Anand, Founding Partner, Jungle Ventures added: “Social or Community Commerce is the next multi-billion dollar internet opportunity in India. Companies like CityMall have the potential to not only eclipse traditional e-commerce models but also grow more virally and profitably. We believe CityMall will soon become a household name in millions of mid-tier homes in India and are pleased to join this journey with the team and help build a long-standing enterprise.”
CityMall so far has raised $36.5 Million to fuel its growth and expansion plans. In March 2021, CityMall raised $11 Million in Series A funding, led by Accel Partners, with participation from existing investors Elevation Capital and WaterBridge Ventures (WBV). In May 2020, CityMall raised a $3 Million seed round led by Elevation Capital with participation from WBV.