Consumer/Food/News/

JOKR raises $260m to become latest speedy grocery unicorn

The company's become a unicorn nine months after launching

By Freya Pratty

JOKR, a New York-based delivery startup, has raised a $260m Series B round, bringing its valuation to $1.2bn nine months after launching.

The startup is currently active in Austria and Poland but says it will now focus its efforts on growing its presence in the US and Latin America instead of Europe.

Its latest funding comes from a long list of investors: Activant Capital, Balderton, Greycroft, GGV Capital, G Squared, HV Capital, Kaszek, Mirae Asset, Monashees, Moving Capital and Tiger Global.

JOKR’s last round was a $170m Series A in June, which allowed it to expand from 100 dark stores across Latin America, the US and Europe (in Vienna and Warsaw) to 200 today. 

JOKR stocks thousands of grocery items and promises to deliver them to customers within 15 minutes. 

The additional firepower will be needed in order to compete in a crowded and cut-throat market — JOKR is one of at least 12 new speedy grocery companies to launch operations in Europe in 2021. 

“We’re not only a convenience business, the next 7/11 iteration. We’re more comprehensive than that”

Companies in the sector have continued to bring in big rounds and secure unicorn status fast. Gorillas, a German startup, hit unicorn status nine months after launch, the same as JOKR.

In Europe Getir, one of the oldest of the pack having launched in 2015, continues to be the most popular with users — it was by far the most downloaded in the Google Play app store this year and is now worth $7.5bn.

Ralf Wenzel, CEO and founder of JOKR, is keen to assert that the company is different from its competitors, focusing not just on speed but also on reorganising the whole supply chain. Although its initial focus is on groceries, JOKR’s ambition is to sell everything from electronics to toys. 

“It’s a next-gen Amazon,” Wenzel told Sifted earlier this year.  “We’re not only a convenience business, the next 7/11 iteration. We’re more comprehensive than that. JOKR is the second generation of ecommerce — driving personalisation to a completely new degree and taking out all the middlemen.”

The company says the volume of goods sold on its app is increasing by 15% each week. It sources items from a mix of local producers and big multinational brands. It has struck deals with large goods companies but it won’t disclose which ones.

Freya Pratty is Sifted’s news reporter. She tweets from @FPratty 

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