The Busy Brains
25 Sept 2023
Billionaire co-founder diversifies portfolio with a significant investment in Bluestone as part of a larger funding round.
Nikhil Kamath, the co-founder of Zerodha and a billionaire, appears to be diversifying his investment portfolio. According to a report from ET, Nikhil is preparing to invest a significant sum of Rs 100 crore in Bluestone, a prominent omnichannel jewelry retailer. This investment is part of Bluestone's larger funding round, which aims to raise around Rs 550 crore.
Notably, other well-known investors may also participate in this funding round. Among them are Deepinder Goyal and Amit Jain from Zomato, along with Ranjan Pai, the chairman of the Manipal Group, and Info Edge Ventures. It's interesting to observe that Bluestone has been successful in retaining the interest of its existing investors.
Gaurav Singh Kushwaha, the Founder & CEO of Bluestone, has confirmed the status of this funding round. He disclosed that the company, headquartered in Bengaluru, is in the final stages of closing a funding round totaling $65 million, which translates to approximately Rs 550 crore. This investment round values Bluestone at an impressive Rs 3,600 crore, equivalent to $440 million. According to Gaurav, the capital raised will play a crucial role in expanding Bluestone's omnichannel presence and improving its technology to streamline operations.
“We will expand on what’s working for us — the omnichannel play. We have 175 stores and there is definitely space to have 500-600 stores eventually,” Kushwaha told the financial daily.
Established in 2011, Bluestone is renowned for offering a diverse selection of jewelry, including rings, pendants, chains, and earrings, crafted from gold and diamonds. These products are available through both physical retail outlets and the company's website.
This development follows closely on the heels of Titan, owned by the Tata Group, acquiring the remaining stakes of CaratLane, another prominent jewelry retailer and a direct competitor to Bluestone. The deal was valued at a substantial Rs 4,621 crore. CaratLane is known for its manufacturing and sale of jewelry items.
"We have great faith in the India Consumer story and believe that the growth journey of CaratLane has only begun and has a long way to go. We thank Mithun Sacheti, Founder and Managing Director of CaratLane for having jointly built a customer-centric brand that all of us in Tata Group can be proud of and wish him continued success in his future endeavours." said C K Venkataraman, Managing Director, Titan.
Nikhil Kamath's investment journey has been marked by several notable investments. In the past, he committed Rs 100 crore to Nazara Tech through Kamath Associates & NKSquared. Additionally, there have been reports suggesting that he invested in Ather Energy, a notable rival to Ola Electric.
In terms of Bluestone's financial performance, specific figures for FY23 have not yet been disclosed. However, FY22 saw remarkable growth for the company. Its operating revenue surged to Rs 461 crore, marking an impressive 88.2% increase compared to the previous fiscal year when it stood at Rs 245 crore. It's worth noting, however, that losses also increased during this period, growing by 90.3% from Rs 31 crore in FY21 to Rs 59 crore in FY22.