Turkey’s Trendyol raises $1.5 bln, valuing it at $16.5 billion

Turkish e-commerce giant Trendyol said Monday it had entered into agreements to raise $1.5 billion from a number of high-profile investors.

With the funding, the valuation of the company backed by Chinese online giant Alibaba has reached $16.5 billion, making it Turkey’s first “decacorn” – a term for startups that pass the $10 billion mark.

The latest round was co-led by General Atlantic, SoftBank Vision Fund 2, as well as Princeville Capital and sovereign wealth funds, ADQ (UAE) and the Qatar Investment Authority, the company said in a statement.

Its top stakeholder Alibaba invested a further $350 million in the company earlier this year in a capital increase, enabling the startup to hit $9.4 billion.

Having purchased Trendyol in 2018, the Chinese giant increased its stake to 86.5% after the transaction.

Trendyol’s main rival in Turkey, Hepsiburada, saw its value hit $3.9 billion in its U.S. stock market debut last month.

It became the first Turkish company listed on the Nasdaq exchange.

Peak Games had become Turkey’s first startup to hit the $1 billion threshold after its acquisition by U.S.-based gaming giant Zynga in a $1.8 billion deal last year.

Among others, Turkish rapid grocery delivery company Getir’s valuation tripled to over $7.6 billion after its latest funding round in June.

One of Turkey’s best-known e-commerce platforms, Trendyol has drawn backing from foreign investors and holds a leading position in the country’s fragmented e-commerce market.

Over the last three years, the firm grew its gross merchandise value by about 20 times and is said to be on track to do about $10 billion in gross merchandise value in 2021.

The company in October entered the European market through a website to serve 27 countries, including Italy, Spain and the U.K.

Trendyol is said to hold 34% of Turkey’s e-commerce market, said Bloomberg, citing Euromonitor data. Hepsiburada follows with 11%, while n11.com holds 8.3% and GittiGidiyor holds 4.4%.