USA: Internet Solution Meets Skyrocketing Demand for Ethnic Foods and Products
Ethnic goes mainstream: EthnicGrocer.com searches the globe to provide American home chefs with easy access to high-quality authentic products Market validation: Innovative application of technology leads to $34 million in financing by Kleiner, Benchmark, Integral and others Because it capitalizes on the power of the Internet to deliver African Fufu Flour and Filipino Sweet Sugar Palm Fruit to Paducah, Ky., EthnicGrocer.com Inc. announced today a $34 million first closing of its Series C financing with several leading venture capital firms and strategic partners. At a time when venture capital financing is drying up, securing $34 million is a major vote of confidence from the VC and investment banking communities. Participating in this first closing are, among others, Integral Capital Partners, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Amerindo Investment Advisors, Merrill Lynch, Benchmark Capital and KB Partners. "With soaring demand across the country for international products, there couldn't be a better application for the Internet," says Parry Singh, President and CEO, EthnicGrocer.com Inc. "The traditional distribution system doesn't work. Our Internet solution permits people to select and receive hard-to-find products from all over the world easily and affordably." "The market for ethnic products will be totally transformed by the Internet," says Roger McNamee, co-founder of Integral Capital Partners. "With its direct relationships to importers, its exceptional Web retailing capabilities and brilliant management team, EthnicGrocer.com is the clear leader in the hottest sector in e-tailing." The company's four Web sites--Namaste.com, GongShee.com, QueRico.com and EthnicGrocer.com--offer investors attractive business models on many fronts:
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