Temasek and Falcon Edge Capital have led India’s $220 million investment in omni-channel eyewear retailer Lenskart, with the Bengaluru-based startup valued at $2.5 billion. The new investment, which includes primary and secondary transactions, is part of a new round unveiled by Lenskart a month ago, when the global investment fundraised $ 95 million from KKR. Bay Capital and Chirata also took part in the new capital.
Piyush Bansal, founder, and CEO of Lenskart, said profitable startups – which sell glasses and contact lenses online at about 750 physical retail outlets across the country – increased sales of spectacle products during the epidemic. The startup, which counts Softbank among its investors, sold about 8 million pairs of iWear last year. Now the company, which claims to lead the market in India, plans to operate in Southeast Asia and the Middle East. The startup estimates that the combined market for spectacles in these regions will reach about $15 billion by 2025, citing its own estimates.
“We are already in the top three in India and Singapore. The Lenscart plans to wear 50% of India’s spectacles in the next five years and expands biologically and inorganically to become the # 1 spectacle platform in Southeast Asia and the Middle East in the next 18 to 24 months,” he said. According to industry estimates, more than half a billion people in India suffer from poor eyesight and need glasses, but only 170 million of them have chosen to improve their vision.
The company plans to deploy some capital to expand the technology stack to create a more personalized experience for its customers. The startup, which recently launched the ‘Lenskart Vision Fund’, said it also wants to invest in other young companies operating in the eye-catching, icare, and alumina retail spaces. Navroz Udwadia, co-founder and partner at Falcon Edge Capital, said in a statement, “We are thrilled to join Pius and his team on this journey and look forward to working closely with Lenskart’s team to help them expand their business internationally”, especially in the Mena region.