Shequ001, a Chinese e-commerce site that specialises in rapid delivery, has secured Series B investment from Banyan Capital. The news was first released as a tip-off from a person familiar with the matter, but Shequ001 reposted the news on its Weibo account today as confirmation. The detailed terms of the deal are still unknown, though some media reported that the round was raised at a whopping valuation of around 2 billion yuan (around US$326 million).
This financing followed a nine-digit yuan Series A investment six month earlier and the company’s angel round was received from Haiyin Venture Partners and ZJ Capital in October 2013.
Shequ001, which means Community001 in Chinese, was established in 2012 by Shao Yuanyuan, Du Guoqiang and Xue Manzi, better known as Charles Xue, a billionaire venture capitalist and one of the most active investors in the Chinese internet industry.
Operating on a community basis, Shequ001 helps supermarket partners to deliver merchandise to consumers, getting goods to the door usually in around one hour. Instead of managing merchandise itself, Shequ001 leverages resources of local partners and assists them with an in-house delivery team. Shequ001 sources its goods from local stores, tapping into their expertise in warehousing and inventory.
Shequ001 is constructing a network that has one logistics center every five miles, and more in densely populated areas, according to the company.
As of present, Shequ001 has set up 78 bricks-and-mortar delivery centers across twelve cities nationwide, claiming over 700,000 users and upwards of 20,000 orders per day. Shequ001 goes after middle-aged homemakers who purchase groceries every week or on a daily basis. According to the company, middle-aged users account for more than 70% of its total user base.
image credit: Shequ001