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Singapore’s Ninja Van raised US$578 million from investors in its latest funding round, including Alibaba Group Holding. Photo: Facebook/Ninja Van

Singapore’s Ninja Van raises US$578 million in new funding round backed by Alibaba, Brunei sovereign fund

  • Singapore-based logistics start-up’s valuation surpasses US$1 billion following latest funding round
  • E-commerce giant Alibaba becomes the latest tech firm to back Ninja Van, joining Grab Holdings, Brunei sovereign fund among others
Ninja Van Group, a Singapore-based logistics start-up, raised US$578 million in its latest funding round, including an investment from Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding, lifting its valuation above US$1 billion as it moves closer to a potential stock listing.

The series E funding round included additional capital from existing investors DPDgroup parent Geopost, investment firm B Capital Group, early-stage tech investor Monk’s Hill Ventures and Zamrud, a sovereign wealth fund controlled by Brunei, the company said in a statement on its website on Sunday.

Alibaba is the parent company of Southeast Asia e-commerce platform Lazada and also the owner of this newspaper.

“The quality of investors joining us in this round of investment is a clear signal that the market recognises the emerging opportunities for e-commerce logistics in Southeast Asia,” Ninja Van co-founder and chief executive Lai Chang Wen said in the statement. As an entrenched player in the region, “Ninja Van is positioned to take a central role in meeting the shifting demands of both businesses and consumers,” he added.


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Founded in 2014, Ninja Van operates a regional platform spanning Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam and the Philippines. It employs more than 61,000 staff and delivery personnel and handles about 2 million packages a day.

Following the latest funding round, the company’s valuation has topped US$1 billion. It raised US$279 million in its prior funding round in May 2020 from investors including Singapore tech unicorn Grab Holdings.

“We strongly believe in the potential of e-commerce in Southeast Asia, in particular the power of technology-enabled logistics to fuel e-commerce growth,” said Kenny Ho, Alibaba’s head of investment for Southeast Asia. Alibaba is confident the partnership would better serve participants in the ecosystem across the region.”

Ninja Van’s clients include Lazada and the e-commerce platform of Singapore tech conglomerate Sea Limited known as Shopee. It also counts Tokopedia - which merged with fellow Indonesia tech company Gojek to form GoTo - which operates e-commerce, ride-hailing and financial services in the region’s biggest economy.
Ninja Van could seek an initial public offering next year, Bloomberg reported on Sunday, citing people familiar with the matter. If that happens next year, it would follow in the footsteps of industry peers as social distancing measures implemented during the coronavirus pandemic fuelled online shopping and delivery services.
JD Logistics, a unit of Chinese e-commerce giant, raised US$3.2 billion in its IPO in Hong Kong in May. Full Truck Alliance, a Chinese service for freight shipping similar to Uber Technologies and known as Manbang in China, raised US$1.6 billion in June.
In August, 58 Freight, the loss-making operator of Kuaigou Dache in China and Hong Kong-based GoGoX filed to go public in the city. GoGoX’s crosstown logistics rival Lalamove also is considering shifting its planned US$1 billion IPO to Hong Kong from the United States.
This article appeared in the South China Morning Post print edition as: Ninja Van raises US$578m from investors