ClearVue leads US$30 million round in Chinese convenience store chain I Believe

Fri Mar 31, 2017 - 9:30am UTC
ClearVue leads US$30 million round in Chinese convenience store chain I Believe

ClearVue Partners, a Shanghai-based private equity firm focused on consumer goods has led a RMB200 million (about US$30 million) Series B round in I Believe, a Chinese convenience store operator.

According to local Chinese media, several undisclosed US-based private equity also participated in the round.

This latest round follows a RMB110 million (about US$15 million) round from about a year ago by ClearVue as well.

Founded in 2012 and based in the Henan province, I Believe is an e-commerce, logistics and convenience store franchise operator. The startup operates over 1,500 stores in ten provinces around China, including Henan, Beijing, and Tianjin among some.

However, unlike traditional convenience stores, I Belive sources goods directly from manufacturers and provides a platform for online order placements, which reduces the layer of purchases from whole-sellers.

With these operations, the company claims that its e-commerce platform recorded a gross merchandise value of RMB890 million (about US$129 million) in 2015.

Moving forward, I Believe also agreed to partner with Wangfujing Group Co., Ltd, a Beijing-based retailing group, to establish a convenience store company in Beijing.

With the latest capital, I Believe plans to invest RMB50 million (about US$7 million) to enhance its platform and open up a network of 300 new stores in Beijing this year.

By Vivian Foo, VCNewsNetwork

This news is published on Reuters.

Vivian Foo is a reporter who writes about Southeast Asia’s technology and startup space. The entry point which led her to write about the startup ecosystem was her fascination of the dot-com boom. She is taking a deep dive into how the entrepreneurial mindset works and hopes to share the insights, innovation, and stories of the startups with her readers.