Delhi NCR-based early-stage startup accelerator Huddle has announced its plans to invest INR 50 Cr in startups by 2022. The accelerator has already deployed about INR 25 Cr in 2021 across 19 startups in sectors such as D2C, EV, agritech, healthtech, among others.
Founded in 2017 by Ishaan Khosla and Sanil Sachar, Huddle co-invests in startups with small cheques of approximately $150K – $200K. On select ventures, the ticket size has gone as high as $300K.
Moving forward, it eyes pre-seed to Series A investments in startups across D2C, EV, alternative nutrition, creator economy, and gaming sectors, among others.
To date, the accelerator has backed about 45 startups and its current portfolio includes startups such as Bold Care, Cell Propulsion, Wellversed, RACEnergy, F5, Celcius, The New Shop, Hapramp, StepSetGo, Yobee Research.
“Over the course of us supporting over 100 founders, we have witnessed an increasing need for acceleration of startups. As an accelerator-led fund, we have built the infrastructure and support functions that can assist ventures across diverse sectors from their early days up,” said Huddle’s Founding Partner Sanil Sachar.
Sectors And Segments Which Makes A Tick
Talking about the preferences in choosing startups to invest in, Sachar told Inc42 that the team’s personal favourites are community aggregating startups — companies that bring together the unorganised sectors into the formal corporate play through networking and communication.
Referring to Inc42 Plus’ report on the D2C and Ecommerce industry that is stated to reach $100 Bn and $200 Bn respectively by 2025, he said that online shopping is another segment that they bank on.
“Yet, to find a suitable startup to invest in, and play of the role of an operator of sorts — building networking and providing infrastructure — we believe that capital in the early days [for a startup] is as good as how it is utilised in its slowest form,” Sachar said.
“We aim to help startups burn less cash, and optimise through our infrastructure,” he added
Currently, Huddle offers acceleration support across strategy, business development through product-tuning, hiring and investment access.
After the INR 50 Cr fund, the accelerator is on a trajectory to launch a larger investment fund by mid-2022.
Building Co-Acceleration Programmes
The sector-agnostic accelerator also built sector-specific co-acceleration programmes in the country apart from a network of funds, family offices, corporate VCs and high-value angels.
Recently, logistics startup Shiprocket and Huddle launched Rocketfuel X Huddle for D2C startups. Huddle had partnered with GrowX ventures to co-accelerate startups in the EV landscape — backing RACEnergy and Cell Propulsion.
While the startup ecosystem has always backed on private accelerators to back them in early-stage, innovations by startups have also caught the attention of large corporates.
Recently, global smartphone and accessories brand OPPO’s Indian entity launched an accelerator program called Elevate. The program will focus on startups in the field of image processing, battery tech, network systems, payments, AI, gaming etc.
Some prominent yearly accelerator programmes include YCombinator, Airtel Startup Accelerator Program, Reliance’s GenNext, Google For Startups, Microsoft Accelerator, The Facebook Accelerator Program, Angel Pad, among others.