Alibaba group backed eWTP Technology and Innovation Fund has made an undisclosed investment in the Vietnamese retail chain Homefarm.
The investment by eWTP Technology and Innovation Fund is a “seven-digit figure,” the company’s CEO Tran Van Truong told DealStreetAsia.
Homefarm was founded in 2014 by Van Truong and his partners. It is a chain of around 150 stores selling imported food from U.S., Australia, and South Korea in Vietnam by integrating shopping channels, Online sales and Home delivery options.
“The proceeds of the funding round will be used to develop and expand our chain of stores with a target to reach 1,000 stores by 2025,” said Van Truong.
The funding was through ReDefine Capital Fund, a Singapore-registered investment entity controlled by eWTP.
The $600-million eWTP Technology and Innovation Fund was set up in 2018 with Chinese billionaire Jack Ma’s Alibaba and Ant Financial as cornerstone investors. It focuses on technological innovation and development of businesses in regions covered by the Belt and Road Initiative.
It reportedly invested recently in Vietnamese Retail Company Ficus Asia Investment and ed-tech firm Educa Corporation.
Vietnam’s food and beverage sector has witnessed an outpouring of deals lately. In July, the foodtech startup KAMEREO raised $4.6 million co-led by Thai conglomerate Charoen Pokphand’s CPF Group, Quest Ventures and Genesis Ventures. Vietnam is one of the largest food production hubs in Southeast Asia, according to Goh Yiping, partner of Quest Ventures.
Globally, the retail sales of food products have consistently been increasing over the past few years and are forecasted to cross $66 billion by 2023, according to Statista.com.