Instacart raised $220 million in a funding round led by Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers. The venture capital firm is also a backer of Uber, which some see as a potential competitor of the online grocery service, Instacart, but management feels it is fundamentally different from Uber, according to Reuters.
Uber, the ride sharing service that has received heat from city, state and national governments for disrupting licensed taxis, launched Uber Essentials, which delivers certain grocer and pharmacy products in the Washington D.C. area. However, Instacart CEO Apoorva Mehta thinks his company can work with Uber, and the two companies need not have an adversarial relationship. There is talk that Mehta and Uber CEO Travis Kalanick might have a potential deal, but this has not been confirmed.
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Instacart is likely to move beyond groceries, said Kleiner partner Mood Rwoghani, and be to groceries what Amazon was to books; “This business offers mainstream appeal.”
Mehta would not compare his company to TaskRabbit, because customers don’t have to type out long lists, but check boxes, and the service is more efficient. Instacart now has a valuation of $2 billion. It has a previous funding round in June, when it raised $44 million, and the company had a valuation of $400 million