Droom plans to raise $50 mn, launches credit platform

By Karan Choudhury , Business Standard, New Delhi | In Digital | April 14, 2017
Droom is an online marketplace to buy and sell new and used automobiles.

Sandeep Aggarwal, founder and chief executive officer of Droom, plans to raise $50 million and to become a unicorn, a start-up with valuation of $1 billion, by the end of this financial year. The e-commerce platform launched Droom Credit, a marketplace to get loans to buy used automobiles, a first of its kind in India, on Thursday.

Droom Credit is a fully automated credit marketplace to get loan approval. It leverages India Stack which includes Aadhaar, e-Sign and Digital Locker. The marketplace also uses, PAN verification, credit score validation, income statement authentication, along with many other variables for instant credit evaluation.

Aggarwal has been making frequent trips to China and Hong Kong among other places to raise the next round of funding, which he believes would happen in the next six months. "We have significant interest coming from China. We did an investor day in Hong Kong. We are thinking of raising around $50 million," he said.

Founded in April 2014 in Silicon Valley, Droom is an online marketplace to buy and sell new and used automobiles and automobile services. According to Aggarwal, Droom would be a billion dollar valuation company by the end of this year and is the fifth largest e-commerce company in terms of gross merchandise value (GMV) if one does not take into account major travel portals.

"If you do benchmarking, I am hoping that we are one of the next ones to be a unicorn. We are saying we are the fifth largest player in the market on the basis of GMV. Our annualised GMV is Rs 2,500 crore, by March 2018 it would be around Rs 7,000 crore," he said. While the e-commerce sector is going through a major churn with eBay joining forces with Flipkart and Snapdeal, Aggarwal said that the online automobile sector has already gone through a level of consolidation. "In our sector consolidation has marginally happened. When we started there were five national brands, three are already gone. Quikr and OLX were invested heavily in cars, but now, not that much," he added.

The company says its burn rate is down to $1 million a month as it runs a tight ship and has a headcount of just 250 employees. The firm hasn't spent much of the Rs 200 crore which they raised in the last round. "Our burn rate is around a million dollars a month. From now on our burn will further go down. We plan to be profitable by Q1 of 2018," he said. The company also plans to make one or two acquisitions by the end of 2018, it said.

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