International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, is investing Rs 171 crore in Indian eye-wear company Lenskart, to help the company expand access to high-quality and affordable eye-care products in Tier-3, Tier-4 cities.
“The Lenskart investment is a part of IFC’s Venture Capital (VC) group’s strategy to invest in innovative Internet, Healthcare and Technology companies across emerging markets,” said Pravan Malhotra, IFC’s co-lead for Global Internet Investments and lead for VC investments in South and Southeast Asia. “This investment will support a rapidly growing market leader in the Internet sector, while meeting a significant gap in the Indian eye care market,” he added. As part of this investment, he will join Lenskart’s Board of Directors.
Lenskart has adopted a unique omni-channel approach thereby making eye-wear truly accessible by making it available on desktop, mobile, hypermarkets, high streets, malls, hospitals and now even at home. The company conducts over 1,500 eye exams daily through its home eye exam service which it intends to make available for every home in urban and rural India.
Lenskart with its special focus on skill development and entrepreneurship development in India, gets people certified by National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC). It runs skill development programs across four cities for training people on operating complex machinery required for manufacturing lenses as well as conducting accurate eye exams. It has over 100 business partners who run and operate stores and plans to partner with another 1,000 entrepreneurs in the next three years. The company encourages women entrepreneurs under the Stand Up India scheme where it helps them get bank loans to become entrepreneurs.
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