Dunzo: The New Way of Delivery
In a fast-paced world, everyone is always busy with something and has no time for the simple things like grocery shopping or going to the store to pick up some medicine. For this reason, delivery services emerged – they pick up the things for you and get them to your doorstep.
And on the Indian market, Dunzo is one of the main delivery companies. Available in all regions around Bangalore, Dunzo offers extensive delivery services in the shortest amount of time to Indian customers. Founded in January 2015 by the young entrepreneurs Kabeer Biswas, Ankur Agarwal, Dalvir Suri, and Mukund Jha, this startup has become the most preferred method for Indians to get anything they need right from the comfort of their homes.
Dunzo is an excellent example of a two-sided network between customers and merchants. Let’s meet the team behind the successful Dunzo business story and see how they scaled up.
The Starting Point
Kabeer Biswas was born in 1984 and has always been known as a risk-taker. His father died when he was 19 and left him considerable wealth, which he used to start up the business. He started the hyper-local delivery service for the first time in Bengaluru's most opulent areas like Indiranagar, Koramangala, and the town's central business district. Step by step, he soon became the logistics part of a few big cities in India.
Kabeer graduated in the field of Electronics in Computers from the University of Mumbai (2000-2004). He also completed a Master in Business Administration (MBA) from SVKM's Narsee Monjee Institute of Management Studies (NMIMS).
After graduation, he spent six years working for Bharti Airtel Limited and in Y2CF Digital Media Private Limited in the production area, where he gained experience for his start-up.
The Rest of the Dunzo Team
Mukund Jha is the co-founder and acts as Dunzo’s CTO. He holds a BTech. in Computer Science from Motilal Nehru National Institute of Technology and a Master's in Computer Science from Columbia University. He worked as a software engineer for Google, and before co-founding Dunzo, he co-founded two other companies in 2013 and 2014 – Habet and Wisdom.ly.
Ankur Agarwal, the other co-founder, is a computer science and engineering graduate from Motilal Nehru National Institute of Technology. He worked together with Mukund Jha for Google. Ankur also had certain experience as an entrepreneur and founded another company before co-founding Dunzo.
Dalvir Suri, the fourth co-founder of Dunzo, graduated in Information Technology at Sardar Patel Institute of Technology of Mumbai University. Before founding Dunzo, he worked as an application developer and a security and privacy consultant at IBM.
Living in India, where it is difficult to navigate big cities, co-founder and CEO Kabeer Biswas came up with the idea to start a business that would ease up the hustle and bustle of living in the big city.
His idea started in 2015 with no plan whatsoever, over WhatsApp, intending to deliver quick service to customers who need something immediately. He noted that all pick-and-drop services in India were rather troublesome and expensive, so why not come up with something that would be the opposite?
And so the plan took off. Initially, the company's headquarters was a small apartment from where Kabeer started completing deliveries on his own but soon employed a few people from an NGO on a part-time basis. They started by making around 70 deliveries per day and became quite popular. So, by 2016, he had to move the WhatsApp business into an application.
Kabeer soon realized that having good logistics is the core part of the business. However, a few problems emerged.
They had quick delivery, which was one of the reasons why people used the service, but the main problem was the selection. So they had to figure out what to do in cases when people wanted something that was not available.
The other problems were the quality and the price of the products. These issues were not controllable since the company worked with many stores.
In the meantime, they were struggling to keep the clients. The delivery system was also insufficient, and the application and website's management and update resulted in major financial losses.
However, Dunzo managed to swim out to the top despite these issues. During the COVID-19 period, this company was the only one to deliver from the local stores to Indians’ homes. Naturally, this brought a huge surge in traffic, pushing Dunzo ahead of all other delivery services in India.
Dunzo Daily and Dunzo Digital
Dunzo started as a local delivery business, soon to expand across Bangalore, and hailed as an all-in-one 24x7 delivery ecosystem to pick and deliver anything and everything for their clients. They are a trusted company that delivers safely and promptly.
The business operates with the help of a website and application. The platform connects the delivery person with the customer and allows tracking of their activity throughout the delivery. There are several payment options, and you can even use Dunzo cash.
The company has also launched Dunzo Daily, the store that customers can use to get Medicine, Pet Supplies, Fruits & Vegetables, food, and gifts, and even send packages from one part of the city to another. These stores are launched all over Karnataka's capital; no wonder the company is growing 100% monthly.
Dunzo has also been part of the Dunzo MedAir consortium for the Government of Telangana's Medicines – used as Covid-19 vaccine delivery for one year. This government-supported process used the digital platform Dunzo Digital enabling faster and more efficient healthcare logistics in the whole delivery system.
Overall, Dunzo has collected over $700 million over 18 funding rounds. The first fund they received was in 2019 and rounded at ₹50M, where the main investor was Kalpavriksh. In August 2019, Dunzo issued Series C1 preference shares and debentures to raise funding of Rs. 34.56 to one of the existing investors, Alteria Capital.
For all the following series, the numbers kept growing. In Series D, Lightbox was the main investor in funding that rounded at about $45 million. Series E was separated into 4 parts – $28 million, $3.7 million, $40 million, and $300 million.
Finally, the last funding – Venture Round was in 2022 and collected $240 million.
Dunzo: The Future of Delivery
Today, the company’s headquarters are in Bengaluru. In 2022, the company started to grow, so now the whole business makes about half a billion dollars of GMV, closing about 10 million monthly transactions.
Dunzo has also signed a few partnerships and collaborated with PepsiCo. They also collaborated with LeadSquared to bring greater efficiency in its process of making new retailers on the platform and enabling them with a wider reach and local delivery services. In 2021, the co-founders partnered with Zee5 and AltBalaji to further boost the company’s growth.
But Dunzo doesn’t see to grow only itself. On the contrary, Dunzo is created to help out every other business that needs a small boost. Namely, when a local grocery shop is about to shut down, Dunzo tries to sign up a contract and help it stay on its feet.
So aside from individual growth, Dunzo also indirectly contributes to the Indian economy. The plan to deliver essentials to customers in just 15-20 minutes and expand in more cities across India, serving more than 50 million customers, is a milestone that might soon be achieved.
This company will keep pushing even in the many years to come, as its goal is to make everyone’s lives as simple as possible.