Boxed, the 'Costco for millennials,' just got supercharged by the Walmart of Japan

BoxedBoxed just got a major investment to beef up its in-house logistics services.
  • Boxed has raised $US111 million in a Series D round of funding, it announced on Tuesday.
  • The round was led by Aeon Co., a Japanese retail giant that is considered one of the largest in Asia.
  • Boxed is an e-commerce site that sells goods in bulk, earning it the nickname “the Costco for millennials.”

Boxed has taped up another round of funding.

The online seller of bulk items, sometimes referred to as the “Costco for millennials,” has closed on a funding round totaling $US111 million, the retailer announced on Tuesday. The round was led by Aeon Co, a Japanese company that has become one of Asia’s biggest retailers.

In a press release, Boxed said that Aeon is Japan’s largest retailer by sales and has become one of the country’s largest seller of fresh grocery items. Aeon operates large, Walmart-like stores in Japan, where they sell both food items and other goods.

Aeon says it will leverage the investment in Boxed to execute a “digital shift,” sharing information on logistics, robots, and data analysis.

The investment from Aeon was announced in April, but no numbers were revealed at the time. The investment makes the company one of the largest shareholders in Boxed, according to the Wall Street Journal. As part of the round, Alpha Square Group, CDIB Capital, Gabriel Naouri, and prior investors also contributed investment.

“Our industry is constantly evolving. Our latest fundraising efforts will allow us to capitalise on those changes. We’ll also continue to expand our national footprint by focusing on reaching our core consumer in various key markets, to increase national brand awareness of Boxed,” Chieh Huang, co-founder and CEO of Boxed, said in a prepared statement.

Boxed says it will use the new cash to focus on its in-house logistics services, building up its robotics team that works to fill orders. The company is also looking to expand and announced it will be opening up a Chicago area fulfillment center to join the four it already has in New Jersey, Nevada, Georgia, and Texas.

Boxed announced a paid membership plan earlier this year. Boxed was also rumoured to be an acquisition target of Kroger and Amazon, though no deals have come to fruition.

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