Jamuna to inject up to Tk 1,000cr into Evaly
Industrial giant Jamuna Group is going to invest up to Tk 1,000 crore in beleaguered e-commerce platform Evaly.
Initially, Jamuna will invest Tk 200 crore and the rest in phases, Evaly said in a statement yesterday.
"We, as a local venture, are really pleased to have another local company by our side," said Mohammad Rassel, founder and CEO of Evaly.
Through this investment, Jamuna has become part of the ongoing investments coming into Evaly. The business group has the opportunity to invest in the next phase as well, he said.
The disclosure comes at a time when several agencies, including the Anti-Corruption Commission, have been carrying out investigations into the alleged embezzlement or transfer of Tk 338.62 crore by Evaly.
The move created concerns among many customers and merchants of Evaly about whether they would get delivery of their products or get refunds.
A recent Bangladesh Bank probe said the liabilities of Evaly to its customers stood at Tk 213.94 crore and to merchants Tk 189.85 crore as of March 14.
The digital commerce platform had a total asset of Tk 91.69 crore as of March 14. Its current asset was Tk 65.17 crore, according to the probe.
Following the investigation, the commerce ministry early this month suggested the ACC, home ministry, the Directorate of National Consumer Rights Protection and Bangladesh Competition Commission to investigate the allegation against Evaly, which now has around 50 lakh registered customers.
In the statement, Evaly yesterday said it would spend the fresh investment money on future development and creating new scopes for business.
"We're trying to get more investment to deliver old orders to customers and clear our backlogs," Rassel said.
Speaking to The Daily Star, Jamuna Group Director Monika Islam said, "We signed a memorandum of understanding today. We are investing in Evaly."
She said the group would invest Tk 100-200 crore initially. "If needed, we will invest Tk 1,000 crore in phases and in different forms."
Monika said Jamuna's main goal is to strengthen the e-commerce platform in Bangladesh. "After an analysis, we have found that Evaly platform is very big. If a big group like us joins Evaly, they will become stronger."
However, she said the ratio of shareholding at Evaly has not been fixed yet. "You will come to know about it soon."
About the central bank's probe and asset-liability mismatch of Evaly, she said the crisis was related to fund management and that's why the online platform was looking for an investor.
Jamuna has been doing business with quality products and services in the country, she said.
Jamuna Future Park is the largest offline marketplace in Bangladesh and Evaly will remain as the largest online marketplace with Jamuna Group, Monika added.
Shamim Islam, managing director of Jamuna Group, said the current global business trend shows that e-commerce can play a vital role in economic development of a country.