Lele Cha, a Shanghai-based tea chain, has made it to the front page for raising $30 million in a pre-Series A financing round. The latest achievement is aimed toward driving the growth of the company towards high growth in China’s tea market.
Sources close to the development cite that the investment round was headed by Vertex Ventures China, while other leading investors included Pusi Capital, Hina Group, Ruchuan Capital, Zhijun Capital and Zhonghai Investment. Sources added that the tea chain potentially contends with major tea brands in China such as Nayuki and HeyTea, among others. For the record, HeyTea had raised around $63 million last April in Series B funding from Longzhu Capital and its earlier investors include He Boquan and IDG Capital, that are all envisioning to make it big in the burgeoning tea market of the region.
Wang Jian, the Chief Executive Officer & Co-Founder at Lele Cha, was recently quoted saying that the latest financing is expected to help the company gain major advantage over product differentiation and lead it further towards acquiring a larger share of the market.
Founded in October 2016, Lele Cha presently operates around 30 stores in big cities including Shanghai, Hangzhou, Beijing, Guangzhou, Xi’an and Nanjing. The company has been looking to deepen its foothold across Eastern and Northern China, with the addition of around 50 more stores.
As per a report by Deal Street Asia, Vertex Ventures China is the investment arm of venture capital firm Vertex Holdings, which targets the areas of artificial intelligence, education, mobile & consumer tech and enterprise services. The company was recently reported to add a new growth fund of about $250 million to its portfolio, which is being considered its largest fund till date, and it will apparently target post-Series B opportunities around the globe.
According to Xiang Ying, the Executive Partner at Vertex Ventures China, the Chinese tea market has been expanding exponentially, specifically among youngsters. He added that the fresh capital will support Lele Cha in scaling up its network and boost the brand’s influence.