Rural commerce startup Rozana has secured a significant funding injection of $22.5 million to spearhead a transformative shift in rural ecommerce within India. Bertelsmann India Investments (BII) spearheaded this funding round, joined by Fireside Ventures, existing investors, and notable figures including Vivek Gupta, co-founder of Licious.

This infusion of capital will empower Rozana to bolster its warehousing and logistics capabilities, fortify its technological infrastructure, and augment its workforce across various domains. Established in 2021 by Ankur Dahiya, Adwait Vikram Singh, Mukesh Christopher, and Prithvi Pal Singh, Rozana has swiftly emerged as a pivotal player in the rural ecommerce landscape.

Focusing on catering to the unique requirements of rural communities, Rozana operates across 13 districts spanning Uttar Pradesh and Haryana, extending its reach to over 12,000 villages. The startup’s innovative hyperlocal ecommerce model harnesses village-based “peer partners” for seamless last-mile delivery, ensuring convenience and affordability for rural patrons.

For Rozana, its model transcends mere business expansion; it embodies a noble mission to empower rural India. Offering a diverse array of over 5,000 products, the company endeavors to make essential commodities accessible to nearly a billion individuals residing in underserved rural markets. At the heart of Rozana’s ecosystem lies a network of 18,000 peer partners, with an impressive 90% comprising women, who play a pivotal role in facilitating deliveries to 30 to 40 households within their respective communities. This symbiotic arrangement not only enhances customer convenience but also fosters additional income avenues for these partners.

Moreover, the recent funding will pave the way for Rozana’s strategic collaboration with Binny Bansal’s startup scaling platform, xto10x Technologies. This partnership will concentrate on optimizing warehouse design, refining last-mile delivery solutions, introducing new product categories, and devising expansion strategies.

Rohit Sood, Partner at Bertelsmann India Investments, expressed his enthusiasm, stating, “The opportunity in rural India is greatly underappreciated and this team is the ideal one to unlock it. The offering created by Ankur, Adwait, and Mukesh is outstanding, and it is hard to find a company with such consumer love. The possibility to create meaningful impact in millions of lives excites us, and we are thrilled to partner with Rozana on this journey.”