Instacart raised another $265 million from investors, sending the grocery delivery company’s valuation to just shy of $39 billion.
This represents the fourth raise during the pandemic and doubles the valuation for the second time in the last year. The company raised $225 million in June of 2020, $100 million in July and $200 million in October. The latest raise brings the grand total to $790 million raised over the last year and pushed company valuation from about $8 billion to $38.7 billion in that same timeframe.
It’s an exceptional growth in funds and valuation, one that the company said reflects the exceptional growth of digitized grocery.
“Today’s fundraising reflects the strength of Instacart’s business, the growth our teams have delivered and the incredible opportunity ahead,” said Nick Giovanni, Instacart CFO. “This past year ushered in a new normal, changing the way people shop for groceries and goods. While grocery is the world’s largest retail category with annual spend of $1.3 trillion in North America alone, it’s still in the early stages of its digital transformation. As online grocery penetration increases over the coming years, we’ll continue to invest in our people, products and partners to support all of the communities we serve.”
The new capital will go towards increasing its headcount by 50 percent in 2021 and investing in key areas like Instacart Marketplace, the company portal that connects customers and retailers. It will also beef up Instacart Advertising capabilities so food makers can better target digital grocery shoppers. The company also noted investments in Instacart Enterprise, its ecommerce solutions for retailers.
Part of that continued investment will be staffing up for the expected initial public offering. The company retained Goldman Sachs to lead the public offering back in November of 2020, when the company was expecting an IPO valuation of $30 billion.
There has been no word on the expected IPO raise, but $39 billion puts the company exactly at the DoorDash valuation ahead of its IPO. Since then, DoorDash has grown to a market cap of about $44 billion. No doubt that successful IPO helped to validate further investment on the road to IPO.
Many prior investors came back for another round. This latest round was led by five investors: Andreessen Horowitz, D1 Capital Partners, Fidelity Management and Research Company, Sequoia Capital, T. Rowe Price.
“Sequoia has been a consistent investor in Instacart since 2013 when we formed our original partnership and the online grocery market was still in its infancy,” said Michael Moritz, a partner at Sequoia Capital. “Now, eight years later, Instacart, which has delivered groceries and goods for millions of customers across North America, is the category leader and fulfilling its role as a vital service for consumers, a reliable partner for retailers and an effective platform for advertisers.”
Along with the announcement, the company provided a fresh look at the size of the business. In all, Instacart partners with almost 600 retailers and offers pickup and delivery across 45,000 locations. The company now reaches 85 percent of U.S. households and 70 percent of Canadian households. In the past year, the company added more than 200 retailers and 15,000 new locations.