Rocket Internet is one of the world's largest e-commerce focused venture capital firms and startup incubators founded in 2007 by the Samwer brothers. The founders gained visibility through successful investments in Groupon, eBay, Facebook, Linkedin, Zynga, etc (either through early direct investment or through taken over target companies). The company's business model is to identify successful internet ventures from other countries (often the United States) and replicate them in predominantly emerging markets. In 2013, Rocket Internet raised close to $2 billion from investors including Russian billionaire Leonard Blavatnik, Swedish investment firm Kinnevik, and J.P. Morgan. This is in addition to nearly $2 billion that Rocket raised in 2012. The firm, tightly controlled by its founders, is known for its aggressive approach in managing its invested ventures, often referred to as blitzkrieg. It prides itself for the speed of execution and ability to hire exceptional talent.
Rocket Internet operates in more than 50 countries and has more than 75 ventures in their portfolio such as the e-commerce retail companies Zalando in Germany, Jabong.com in India, Lamoda.ru in Russia, ZALORA in South East Asia, The Iconic and Zanui in Australia, the global food delivery platform foodpanda/hellofood, the global property listings site Lamudi as well as Lamudi.pk, Carmudi, Kaymu.pk, easytaxi.com.pk, Azmalo.pk and Daraz.pk in Pakistan. Rocket Internet’s various companies created more than 20.000 jobs worldwide. Previous ventures include, for example, CityDeal, which was purchased by Groupon for US$126M, Wimdu which profited by US$90M.
Rocket Internet ventured into the ecommerce market in Latin America in April 2012. Its journey into ecommerce started in Mexico with the venture called: Linio. Linio, the so-called ‘Amazon of Latin America’, is a Rocket Internet-incubated e-commerce company. Linio offers a wide variety of products online in various categories, such as home electronics, technology, mobiles, entertainment, home, appliances, fashion, sporting goods, babies and toys, books, and personal care products. Customers can pay online, as well as at their doorstep (cash on delivery and credit card on delivery). The Mexican venture was the first one in a series of e-commerces in latinamerican territory. Linio has around 1000 employees in all its four countries: Colombia, Mexico, Peru and Venezuela.
The office is located in São Paulo and has 15 ventures being developed: CupoNation, 21 Diamonds, Airu, Dafiti, Easy Taxi, hellofood, Kanui and ClickBus Mobly, Payleven, Tricae, WestWing, Wimdu, YepDoc and Zocprint.
Rocket launched Zalora Philippines in late 2011 and Lazada Philippines and OfficeFab in early 2012. Zalora is the first large-scale full-service e-commerce fashion site in the Philippines. Furthermore, the property listings site Lamudi plus Lamido, Carmudi, and Easy Taxi operate in the Philippines as well.
In November 2011 the company launched ZALORA Singapore, an online retailer of fashion and shoes based in eastern Singapore, which primarily targets 18-35 year old men and women. It is part of larger ZALORA Group that also has a presence in Malaysia, Thailand, Philippines, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Vietnam and Indonesia since late 2011. ZALORA Singapore currently has over 300 employees. ZALORA Singapore is currently available only to those living in Singapore.
In Singapore, Rocket Internet GmbH has also set up foodpanda, a separate venture that delivers food via orders through its website. It works by allowing users to browse through menus of partner restaurants near the user's postal code, order the food, and pay via cash on delivery. Foodpanda is currently active in 27 throughout Latin America, Africa, Europe and Asia. Other ventures in Singapore are Wimdu and Pricepanda. In Feb 2014, foodpanda group raised additional USD 20 million of funding to continue global roll out.
In Pakistan, latest projects of Rocket Internet include Daraz.pk, which is an e-commerce portal operating from their office in Karachi and Lamudi, a real estate portal operating in all major cities. Other projects include Carmudi.pk, Foodpanda.pk, Kaymu.pk, and Easy Taxi.
Latest projects of Rocket Internet in Poland include 21Diamonds, eDarling, foodpanda, Glossybox, payleven, Paymill, Westwing, Wimdu, Zalando and CupoNation
In 2011, Rocket Internet funded FabFurnish.com and Jabong.com which is an e-commerce portal operating out of their Gurgaon office. The portal covers fashion, home decoration, sportswear and special design products. In 2012 they funded India's first B2B focused ecommerce company OfficeYes.
Lamoda is the leading online retailer in Russia and CIS, offering more than 1,000,000 products and 900 international brands. With Lamoda Express, it operates its own express delivery network supporting next day delivery to currently more than twenty-five cities throughout Russia and Kazakhstan. Positioned as a leader in customer experience, Lamoda offers free shipping and a try-on service, as well as 365 day period for returns free of charge. Lamoda was launched in 2011 by its four founders Dominik Picker, Florian Jansen, Burkhard Binder and Niels Tonsen. Lamoda’s existing investors are named as Investment AB Kinnevik, Access Industries, JP Morgan, Summit Partners, World Bank Group’s IFC and Tengelmann.
In Finland Rocket Internet is present with 5 ventures. These include Eliittikumppani, Paymill Wimdu, Zalando and CupoNation.
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- Rocket Internet
- Lamoda, The Samwer Brothers’ Russian Online Fashion Store, Snags $130M Led By Access Industries
- Rocket Internet Fashion Ecommerce Startups, Lamoda & Dafiti, Get €25M From World Bank Group’s IFC
- DST invested $315 million in German startup incubator Rocket Internet ewdn.com
- foodpanda group raised additional USD 20 million of funding to continue global roll out
- CupoNation Global