Pilgrim, a direct-to-consumer (D2C) personal care company, said that Vertex Ventures Southeast Asia and India led its most recent fundraising round, which brought in $20 million. Existing investors Fireside Ventures and the Narotam Sekhsaria Family Office also participated in the round.

Anurag Kedia, the creator of Pilgrim, stated that approximately $14 million of the whole round came from a primary share sale while the remaining funds came from a secondary deal. The company declined to provide information on the investors who sold shares during the round and its post-round valuation.

In a secondary transaction, as opposed to a primary investment, an existing investor sells all or a portion of their shares to another investor, and the proceeds do not go to the company.

The Mumbai-based company stated that it intended to use the funds raised to support its offline expansion goals, brand-building efforts, and research and development initiatives. By 2025, the company hopes to have an annualised run rate of Rs 1,000 crore.

By the end of the year, Pilgrim intends to open five unique stores, with a focus on cities like Mumbai, Chennai, Bengaluru, and New Delhi. It can currently be found in about 300 partner businesses that sell cosmetics and personal care items.

The company’s offline channel accounts for about 10% of its total revenues. Marketplaces like Nykaa and Amazon account for 50% of sales, with the company’s own website accounting for 40%, according to co-founders Kedia and Gagandeep Makker in an interview with ET.

“We are currently present across more than 300 beauty advisor counters, and over the next 12 to 15 months, this number is expected to increase significantly,” they continued.

This capital round fits into a larger trend among direct-to-consumer firms looking to expand across omni-channels in order to build a physical presence. To hasten its debut into the offline sector, Pilgrim appointed Vishakh Narendran as its chief business officer in May 2023. According to the company, it wants to diversify into more contemporary trade venues.

According to Kedia, the company’s greatest monthly income of Rs 25 crore in gross sales, or Rs 300 crore in annual run rate, was recorded in August. He said that the company has tripled in size during the previous 12 months.

Kedia and Makker were upbeat about the approaching holiday season. “As the holiday season approaches, most consumer brands have their highest sales in the months of October, November, and December. We anticipate adding about 30 to 40 stock keeping units (SKUs) by December over the roughly 90 SKUs we presently have in our portfolio, and we aim to improve on what we previously delivered in August.

According to a statement from the company, Pilgrim had previously received finance totaling Rs 48 crore from backers including Fireside Ventures and the Narotam Sekhsaria Family Office.

“Vertex Ventures is a Southeast Asia-focused fund, and that network will be helpful as we consider global expansion in the future. When it comes to integrating Vertex Ventures into their captable, Kedia said, “They can bring in learnings from what is happening in other geographies and draw parallels to the Indian market where Pilgrim could play a significant role in.”