RedMart

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Founded in August 2011, RedMart is reportedly Singapore's largest online supermarket. The company was co-founded by Roger Egan III, Vikram Rupani, and Rajesh Lingappa. RedMart reportedly sells more than 100,000 products and offers home delivery seven days a week all year round.[1]

Founding

RedMart was set up when co-founder Roger Egan III realised that there was no up-to-date online supermarket in Singapore. While grocery e-shopping is not new in the country, having been pioneered by Cold Storage in 1997, it has been dormant in the past decade.[2]


Roger Egan III worked together with Vikram Rupani, who he met while pursuing an MBA in Entrepreneurship at INSEAD Asia Campus to set up RedMart. Egan connected with Rajesh Lingappa on LinkedIn who joined the duo as the company's Chief Technology Officer.[3]

Founders

Roger Egan III

Roger Egan III is one of the co-founders of RedMart. As of August 2019, he is the Group Head of Supermarket at Lazada Group.[4] At 10 years old he showed his enterprising potential when he hired other children to shovel snow off his neighbours’ driveways. Initially, he did not consider entrepreneurship as a career path and had set his sights on investment banking or consulting.[5]


Roger graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with a Bachelor's degree in Economics. He spent more than a year as an Associate at Omega Capital, before leaving to set up an insurance brokerage company, Integro Insurance Brokers.[6] The company went on to raise US$320 million (S$ 442.768 million) in venture capital.[7] Subsequently, he went to further his studies at INSEAD Asia Campus, where he met Vikram Rupani. After graduating from INSEAD, they co-founded RedMart.

Vikram Rupani

Vikram Rupani is one of the co-founders of Redmart. As of August 2019, he is the President of Lazada SG (Alibaba Group). Vikram studied at Mallya Aditi International School before moving on to The Armand Hammer United World College. He graduated with a summa cum laude from Babson College with a Bachelor's degree in Business Management, Finance and Economics.[8]


Upon graduation, he joined JP Morgan for two years as an Investment Banking Analyst based in New York. He was ranked as the top corporate financial analyst in the Industrials & Transportation coverage group. After JP Morgan, he joined Carlson Capital as a Research Analyst for two years and three months before co-founding Vikkon Resins, which was the first polymer and alkyd resin manufacturing plant in Bahrain.[9] Vikram then went on to pursue his MBA at INSEAD Asia Campus, where he met Roger Egan III.

Rajesh Lingappa

Rajesh Lingappa is one of the co-founders of RedMart. As of August 2019, he is the Chief Technology Officer (CTO) of RedMart. Rajesh graduated from Karnatak University with a BE in Electronics and Communications and then graduated from the National University of Singapore (NUS) with a Masters in Technology, Software Engineering. Before joining RedMart, he was working at Bubble Motion for 3 years and 6 months, first as a Director of Engineering and then as Chief Architect.[10] Roger Egan III reached out to Rajesh via LinkedIn to ask him to join RedMart as a co-founder.[11]

Expansion and growth

Seed funding

Initial funding Second round Series A funding Series B funding[12]
Date August 2011 December 2012 18 July 2013 15 July 2014
Amount (SGD) Undisclosed Undisclosed More than S$3 million US$23 million (S$31.7906 million)
Investors
  • Patrick Turner, Serguei Netessine and Neil Bearden (INSEAD Professors)
  • Family and friends[13]
  • Toivo Annus (Skype co-founder)[14]
  • Golden Gate Ventures (Singapore Silicon Valley-based venture fund)[15]
  • Jason Ackerman (Co-founder and CEO of online grocer FreshDirect.com in the US)
  • Boon Ling Yee (Singaporean, former Commercial Director of Tesco China)
  • Anne-Ev Juette-Enzmann (Former Marketing Strategy Director at Tesco Thailand)[16]
  • Garena
  • Garena
  • Eduardo Severin (Facebook co-founder)
  • SoftBank Ventures
  • Visionnaire Ventures
Purpose of funding Initial investment into RedMart. Investment into RedMart. Improve RedMart's logistical infrastructure in Singapore.[17]
  • Build operational capacity to support future growth.
  • Expand RedMart's product range to include fresh food.
  • Pilot warehouse automation technology by Hope Technik, a robotics firm in Singapore.
  • Ramping up delivery frequency to customers.

Growth in Singapore

In 2013, RedMart moved to a 12,000 sq ft warehouse to house their products. The new fulfilment centre included a cool room for fresh produce. RedMart's revenue increased from USD15,000 in January 2012 to USD 250,000 in January 2013.[18] In the same year, they received funding from East Ventures after the announcement of their new fulfilment centre.[19]


In June 2015, RedMart officially expanded into meal delivery with 'Homemade by RedMart'. The service was launched in stealth mode in January 2015, shipping around 700 meal kits during its first three months. It went public in April where 1,000 meals were delivered to 800 Singaporean families in two weeks.[20] Each meal ranged between S$15 to S$30 with no delivery charge above S$30.[21]


In November 2015, RedMart launched 'RedMart Relay', a service that uses Runners - freelance shoppers - to deliver goods to their customers. The Runners would pick up the items from participating local retailers and deliver them quickly. The service covers a wide range of services, such as food, household items, apparel and electronics. The service also promises delivery within an hour from ordering.[22]

Overseas expansion

In 2014, RedMart announced its expansion into India with the opening of a new development centre in Bangalore. The new centre is said to be the “analytics hub for data-oriented decision-making". In an official statement, RedMart revealed that this centre will optimize their business processes through new technologies.[23]


In 2015, RedMart announced its plans to expand to Jakarta, Bangkok, Hong Kong, Kuala Lumpur, Ho Chi Minh City, Manila and Taipei. At the time, Hong Kong was flagged as their next target, followed by Indonesia.[24]

Lazada-RedMart merger (2016)

RedMart's losses increased from US$9.43 million to US$29.4 million for the 2014 financial year. In 2015, RedMart reported an operating loss of US$21 million. Additionally, RedMart also reported US$126 million in total liabilities but attributed it to preference shares it gave out to investors. Meanwhile, revenue has been climbing since 2013, from US$1.5 million to US$9.6 million in 2014 to US$ 27 million in 2015.

Initial stages

On November 2, 2016, Lazada confirmed that it has agreed to acquire RedMart. By teaming up, both companies stand to benefit from each other’s operational infrastructure and extended customer network.[25] Talks reportedly started in October 2016, with a speculated acquisition amount of about US$30 million to US$40 million. RedMart also held unsuccessful talks with supermarket chain NTUC and Singapore sovereign fund GIC, as well as having received a “lowball” offer from Amazon.[26]


On 20 April 2017, RedMart is one of the companies part of Lazada’s LiveUp programme. The membership program partners with Taobao Collection, Netflix, Uber and UberEats to offer pooled benefits from partners to customers. This programme was a response to the competition from Amazon’s Prime service.[27]

Eventual integration

RedMart operated independently until 15 March 2019, when it was fully integrated into Lazada. Since then, the RedMart mobile app and website have ceased operations. RedMart has its own section on the Lazada website where users can “complete their transactions from other Lazada stores at one go” with more payment options, such as the Lazada wallet.[28]

Awards

Year Title
2018 eCommerce Brand of the Year at the Asia eCommerce Awards
2018 Best eCommerce Merchant – Consumer Goods at the Asia eCommerce Awards
2018 Best eCommerce Customer Service at the Asia eCommerce Awards
2018 Best Design at the Asia eCommerce Awards
2018 Best Platform Experience at the Asia eCommerce Awards
2018 Best AdWords eCommerce Campaign at the Asia eCommerce Awards
2018 Best Mobile eCommerce Campaign at the Asia eCommerce Awards
2016 ‘Spark of Hope’ Award at the SCORE Appreciation Awards

References / Citations

  1. Chua, Justin. “Meet Redmart, the Latest (and Greatest?) Online Mart in Singapore.” Tech in Asia. January 12, 2012. Accessed 7 August 2019. Retrieved from: https://www.techinasia.com/meet-redmart-the-latest-and-greatest-online-mart-in-singapore.
  2. Chua, Justin. “Meet Redmart, the Latest (and Greatest?) Online Mart in Singapore.” Tech in Asia. January 12, 2012. Accessed 7 August 2019. Retrieved from: https://www.techinasia.com/meet-redmart-the-latest-and-greatest-online-mart-in-singapore
  3. Chua, Justin. “Meet Redmart, the Latest (and Greatest?) Online Mart in Singapore.” Tech in Asia. January 12, 2012. Accessed 7 August 2019. Retrieved from: https://www.techinasia.com/meet-redmart-the-latest-and-greatest-online-mart-in-singapore
  4. “Roger Egan III”. LinkedIn. Accessed on 7 August 2019. Retrieved from: https://sg.linkedin.com/in/rogereganiii
  5. Lee, Terence. “These Former Investment Bankers Are Changing Grocery Shopping in Singapore.” Tech in Asia. January 14, 2012. Accessed on 7 August 2019. Retrieved from:  https://www.techinasia.com/these-former-investment-bankers-are-changing-grocery-shopping-in-singapore
  6. “Roger Egan III”. LinkedIn. Accessed on 7 August 2019. Retrieved from: https://sg.linkedin.com/in/rogereganiii
  7. Lee, Terence. “These Former Investment Bankers Are Changing Grocery Shopping in Singapore.” Tech in Asia. January 14, 2012. Accessed on 7 August 2019. Retrieved from:  https://www.techinasia.com/these-former-investment-bankers-are-changing-grocery-shopping-in-singapore
  8. “Vikram Rupani”. LinkedIn. Accessed on 7 August 2019. Retrieved from: https://sg.linkedin.com/in/vrupani
  9. “Vikram Rupani”. LinkedIn. Accessed on 7 August 2019. Retrieved from: https://sg.linkedin.com/in/vrupani
  10. “Rajesh Lingappa”. LinkedIn. Accessed on 7 August 2019. Retrieved from: https://sg.linkedin.com/in/rajeshlingappa
  11. Varma, Ankita. "Making a Mark with Redmart." AsiaOne. April 15, 2016. Accessed 8 August 2019. Retrieved from: https://www.asiaone.com/making-mark-redmart
  12. Lee, Terence. “Singapore Online Grocery Store Redmart Gets $23M from Star-Studded Investors.” Tech in Asia. July 15, 2014. Accessed on 7 August 2019. Retrieved from:  https://www.techinasia.com/singapore-online-grocery-store-redmart-23m-starstudded-investors/
  13. Lee, Terence. “These Former Investment Bankers Are Changing Grocery Shopping in Singapore.” Tech in Asia. January 14, 2012. Accessed on 7 August 2019. Retrieved from:  https://www.techinasia.com/these-former-investment-bankers-are-changing-grocery-shopping-in-singapore
  14. Wee, Willis. "RedMart Bags Money From Co-founder of Skype, Launches in Singapore". Tech In Asia. January 16, 2012. Accessed on 12 August 2019. Retrieved from: https://www.techinasia.com/redmart-singapore
  15. T, Gwendolyn Regina. “The Bridge Opens, Golden Gate Ventures Invests in TradeGecko, Redmart, Coda Payments.” Tech in Asia. December 18, 2012. Accessed on 7 August 2019. Retrieved from: https://www.techinasia.com/ggv-invests-ecommerce-tradegecko-redmart-coda-payments
  16. T, Gwendolyn Regina. “The Bridge Opens, Golden Gate Ventures Invests in TradeGecko, Redmart, Coda Payments.” Tech in Asia. December 18, 2012. Accessed on 7 August 2019. Retrieved from: https://www.techinasia.com/ggv-invests-ecommerce-tradegecko-redmart-coda-payments.
  17. Lee, Terence. “Singapore Online Grocery Store Redmart Gets $23M from Star-Studded Investors.” Tech in Asia. July 15, 2014. Accessed on 7 August 2019. Retrieved from:  https://www.techinasia.com/singapore-online-grocery-store-redmart-23m-starstudded-investors/
  18. Lee, Terence. “Singapore Online Grocer Redmart.com Greets 12,000 Sq Ft Warehouse, 16x Revenue Growth.” Tech in Asia. February 4, 2013. Accessed on 7 August 2019. Retrieved from: https://www.techinasia.com/singapore-online-grocer-redmart-com-says-hello-to-12000-sq-ft-warehouse/
  19. Lee, Terence. “East Ventures Invests in Singapore Online Grocer Redmart.” Tech in Asia. March 8, 2013. Accessed on 7 August 2019. Retrieved from: https://www.techinasia.com/east-ventures-invests-in-redmart/
  20. Tay, Daniel. "Meal Delivery Startups Are Dying in Singapore, but Redmart Might Just Win the Market." Tech in Asia. June 5, 2015. Accessed 7 August 2019. Retrieved from:  https://www.techinasia.com/meal-delivery-dying-singapore-redmart-homemade-win/
  21. Tay, Daniel. "Meal Delivery Startups Are Dying in Singapore, but Redmart Might Just Win the Market." Tech in Asia. June 5, 2015. Accessed 7 August 2019. Retrieved from:  https://www.techinasia.com/meal-delivery-dying-singapore-redmart-homemade-win/
  22. Tegos, Michael. "Redmart’s 1-hour Delivery Service Relay Launches in Singapore." Tech in Asia. November 30, 2015. Accessed 8 August 2019. Retrieved from: https://www.techinasia.com/redmart-relay-is-real
  23. Velayanikal, Malavika. "Singapore’s Hot Online Grocer Redmart Sets Foot in India." Tech in Asia. September 11, 2014. Accessed 7 August 2019. Retrieved from: https://www.techinasia.com/singapores-hot-online-grocer-redmart-sets-foot-india/.
  24. Lee, Terence. "Singapore’s Redmart Raises $26.7M to Prepare for Regional Expansion." Tech in Asia. August 20, 2015. Accessed 8 August 2019. Retrieved from: https://www.techinasia.com/singapores-redmart-raises-267m-prepare-regional-expansion/
  25. Balea, Judith. "It’s Confirmed: Alibaba-backed Lazada Is Buying RedMart." Tech in Asia. November 02, 2016. Accessed 8 August 2019. Retrieved from: https://www.techinasia.com/its-confirmed-alibaba-backed-lazada-is-buying-redmart
  26. Retail Asia. "Lazada in Talks to Buy Redmart for Rumored $30m to $40m." Retail News Asia. October 29, 2016. Accessed 8 August 2019. Retrieved from: https://www.retailnews.asia/lazada-talks-buy-redmart-rumored-30m-40m/
  27. Luo, Michael. "Lazada, Redmart, Uber, and Netflix Take on Amazon Prime with New Subscription Service." Tech in Asia. April 20, 2017. Accessed 8 August 2019. Retrieved from: https://www.techinasia.com/lazada-redmart-liveup-subscription-service
  28. Ellis, Jack. "Lazada and Redmart to Merge in Regional Groceries Drive." Tech in Asia. January 31, 2019. Accessed 8 August 2019. Retrieved from: https://www.techinasia.com/lazada-fully-integrate-redmart-regional-groceries-drive