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Actor Suniel Shetty-backed men’s grooming brand Beardo has raised $500K Seed funding from seed investment and innovation platform Venture Catalysts.

This investment round was led by  Raj Vazirani from RHV enterprise; Siddharth Somaiya of Godavari Biorefineries & Somaiya Group; Anuj Golecha and Apoorv Ranjan Sharma, co-founders of Venture Catalysts (VCats) among other experts from the FMCG space.

Talking about the development, Ashutosh Valani, co-founder, Beardo said, “Raising funds from Venture Catalysts will certainly help our business to expand our reach offline and upgrade logistics and infrastructural needs. Besides infusing funds, VCats have been tremendously co-operative in providing mentorship, quick evaluation, and super quick decisions”.

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Ahmedabad-based Beardo was founded in October 2015 by Ashutosh Valani and Priyank Shah. It provides hair- and body-care offerings for men. It began with beard oils and currently the range includes beard washes, beard balm, beard & hair growth oil, serum, face washes, beard & hair wax, soaps, beard combs, and more.

According to a company statement, it is currently the top selling brand in men’s grooming category on India’s top ecommerce sites: Flipkart, Amazon, Snapdeal and Nykaa. The startup is clocking around 500 orders per day. It has also established a presence in 500 salons across Ahmedabad, Pune, Mumbai, Surat & Delhi. In 10 months of operations, it claims to have crossed a GMV of $1.8 Mn (INR 120 Lakh) per month.  The source of revenue generation mainly comes from online distributors, online sales, and salon sales.

The company has also roped in Suniel Shetty as a brand ambassador. When asked what enticed him to associate with the brand, he said: “I personally prefer to associate with brands that I can vouch for and Beardo is one such brand. The men’s grooming industry is currently booming and I am extremely thrilled to play an active role in influencing this revolution.”

Prior to this in July 2016, SaaS-based startup Don’t Scratch Your Head (DSYH) raised $250K Seed funding from Venture Catalysts. Later that month it announced its expansion to Delhi and NCR. The expansion was done via a strategic tie-up with Edge Tech Ventures, an investment banking firm.

Currently men’s grooming comes under flagship portals of Flipkart, Amazon India, Purplle and others, where typically products are sold on the platform. Although, there are a few players like The Man Company and Ustaraa which deal exclusively with men’s grooming and offer products as well as services. In August 2016, Bombay Shaving Co., a New Delhi-based men’s grooming startup raised $600K in an angel funding round from 25+ investors.

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