Private equity firm ChrysCapital is reportedly in talks to invest around $100 million in eyewear retailer Lenskart as part of an ongoing funding round that would take the total investment to around $500 million. Existing backers SoftBank Vision, Kedaara Capital, TR Capital and others are clocking a partial exit, while Alpha Wave Global may also take part by purchasing more shares, the Economic Times reported.
This financing round is largely a secondary share sale where stocks will change hands from existing to new investors and the money won’t go into the company’s coffers. The investment is taking place at a valuation of $4 billion. Lenskart founder and CEO Peyush Bansal did not respond to the report.
Lenskart has conducted secondary share sales over the past few years to pave the way for partial exits to investors like Chiratae Ventures and others. Since inception in 2010, Lenskart has raised a total of $1.06 billion, including through secondary share sales. According to sources briefed on Lenskart's recent financials, the company clocked about Rs 4.15 billion in sales in December 2022, of which Rs 1.83 billion came from Owndays, which it acquired in 2021. Lenskart spent about Rs 4.8 billion in the April-December period last year including monthly burn and capital expenditure for its new plant as well as stores across the country.
Sources aware of Lenskart’s internal plans said the company was expecting to turn profitable in the financial year 2023. While most of its 1,100 stores of Lenskart are in India, the firm aims to continue expansion with 400 new stores as it looks to scale its revenue. The company reported nearly 66 per cent growth in consolidated operating revenue at Rs 15.02 billion in the financial year 2022 (FY22), signalling a recovery in sales after COVID-19. However, the firm reported losses of Rs 1.02 billion after clocking a profit of Rs 280 million in the previous financial year, regulatory filings showed.
Lenskart's Neso Brands, a Thrasio-style venture, closed a financing of $100 million in 2022. Neso is essentially looking to invest in global eyewear brands early on and leverage Lenskart’s network to expand these brands. Neso plans to take a majority stake in eyewear brands with a revenue of $10-50 million.