Bengaluru-based startup Zetwerk, a manufacturing platform that connects original equipment manufacturers with component suppliers, has raised USD 120 million from Lightspeed Venture Partners and existing backer Greenoaks Capital. The Series D round also saw participation from existing backers including Sequoia Capital India and Kae Capital.
With the fresh funds, Zetwerk plans to strengthen its technology and continue its expansion into new categories and regions. It aims to establish itself as a go-to platform for the global manufacturing industry.
Last year, in the middle of the pandemic, Zetwerk had landed itself a USD 21 million-check in its Series C funding round led by Greenoaks Capital in July 2020. The latest investment has brought its total fundraise to USD 193 million.
Founded in 2018 by the alumnus of India’s esteemed engineering college Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Amrit Acharya, Srinath Ramakkrushnan, Rahul Sharma, and Vishal Chaudhary, Zetwerk is one of the very few startups focusing on the manufacturing segment.
Its B2B platform offers on-demand manufacturing services, connecting original equipment manufacturers (OEM) and engineering procurement construction (EPM) companies with small and medium enterprises in the manufacturing sector. It operates as a middleman, working with OEMs and EPMs, helping them procure relevant and customized components from suppliers of their product and providing them assembly services.
“Zetwerk showed up as a real dependable partner to its buyers and suppliers, often stepping up to help in moments of vulnerability – especially during the Covid induced lockdowns,” said Vaibhav Agrawal, partner at Lightspeed Venture Partners. “The Zetwerk supply chain has emerged leaner, faster, stronger on multiple fronts post-Covid, and it is a great example of an antifragile system.”
Zetwerk has clients in over 25 industries including automotive, oil and gas, steel, aerospace, automotive, energy, consumer electronics, medical devices, and apparel and luxury goods. It offers products and assembly services including prefabricated structures for infrastructure projects; sheet metal parts for electric vehicles, precision parts for aerospace, and assembly lines for consumer durables, among other things.
After growing rapidly in India, the startup began eying the international market. As such, it was helping local suppliers to connect with OEMs and EPMs in overseas markets, that established India as a go-to-place for their manufacturing needs. Reportedly, early last year, Zetwerk set up a small sales team in North America and some channel partners in Europe to expand its operations.
Neil Shah, Partner at Greenoaks Capital, said the company has the potential to quickly become one of the most important manufacturing platforms globally.
Currently, Zetwerk has over 250 customers (OEMs and EPMs) and 2,000-plus suppliers (manufacturing SMEs) across 15 countries in North America, Asia-Pacific, and the Middle East. According to the company, despite the impact of the pandemic it tripled its year-on-year growth in 2020.
“Zetwerk’s international business has grown substantially since its launch in 2020, as global customers sought to make their supply chains more resilient by diversifying into India and South East Asia as alternate sourcing destinations,” the company said in a statement.
The growth comes on the heels of the Indian government’s aspirations of making the country self-reliant by cutting down its dependence on Chinese manufacturers amidst the on-going tension with its Asian neighbor. The government has its focus on making India a global manufacturing hub.
Currently, a handful of companies aim to disrupt the traditional Indian manufacturing segment like B2B marketplaces which include Moglix, Industrybuying, and Indiamart, as well as manufacturing services providers like Inframart Realtech. However, Zetwerk’s ability to act as a marketplace and a services provider in the manufacturing segment has made it stand out from the competition.
“The global manufacturing industry has had to swiftly adjust to the new normal, and digital solutions have become essential,” Amrit Acharya, co-founder & CEO, Zetwerk, said in a statement. “2021 will see a further pace of growth as companies seek to diversify their procurement to minimize disruptions and become more agile and resilient.”