We bring to you the latest edition Funding Galore: Indian Startup Funding of the week.
This week 20 startups raised around $100 Mn in funding altogether in the Indian startup ecosystem. (The startup funding calculations are based on the startups that disclosed funding amount.).
One of the biggest Indian startup funding news this week was Flipkart infusing $79.6 Mn (INR 519 Cr) in fresh funding into Phonepe.
Indian Startup Funding Of The Week
Smaaash: Mumbai-based gaming company Smaaash raised $6.17 Mn (INR 40.2 Cr) funding from 23 High Networth Individuals (HNIs). The Sachin Tendulkar backed company allotted shares to Ravi Modi, founder of Manyavar; Lakshmi Narayanan, former vice chairman of Cognizant, and Vijaylaxmi Poddar of Balkrishna Industries amongst others.
Fynd: One of the biggest Indian startup funding announcement was made by Fynd this week. The Mumbai-based O2O fashion ecommerce platform, Fynd raised an undisclosed amount in Series C funding led by global search giant Google. Others who participated in the round include Fynd’s existing investors: Kae Capital, IIFL, Singularity Ventures, GrowX, Tracxn Labs, Venture Catalyst, Patni family office, and HongKong based Axis Capital among other angel investors. The startup plans to use the funding to enhance the way it engages with consumers and retailers in a better way.
Carmel Organics: Neemuch, Madhya Pradesh-based agritech startup Carmel Organics raised an undisclosed amount of funding from Ankur Capital, an India-focussed VC fund backing early-stage startups.The startup will use the funding to scale-up its business, particularly targeting the global markets.
SmartCoin: Bengaluru-based micro-lending startup SmartCoin raised $2 Mn in a Pre-Series A round of funding led by an undisclosed Chinese venture fund. Others that participated in the round include the US-based Accion Venture Lab, Unicorn India Ventures and ISME ACE, a Mumbai-based fintech accelerator. The startup will use the funding to further invest in technology and grow its team as it continues with its expansion plans, with an aim to cover a much larger customer base.
The Print: Delhi-based online news portal The Print raised $535K (INR 3.49 Cr) in an extended seed funding round from existing investor Ratan Tata. Veteran journalist and former editor-in-chief of The Indian Express Shekhar Gupta had launched The Print in January 2016.
Cash Suvidha: Delhi-based online lending platform Cash Suvidha raised $1 Mn in a Pre-Series A funding round from Initia Holdings; Vipin Agarwal, Partner in India Industrial Growth Fund and others. The startup will use the funding to increase the loan books of the company and to further strengthen its technological infrastructure.
DriveU: Bengaluru-based on-demand driver aggregator DriveU raised $3 Mn in Pre-Series A funding led by Singhal Foundation, an NGO working for education of underprivileged children. Existing investor Unitus Seed Fund, Geoff Wooley of Patamar Ventures, Rajeev Madhavan of Clear Ventures and a few Silicon Valley-based investors also participated in this round. The startup further plans to expand its existing fleet of 6,000 drivers to 10,000 drivers by the end of 2018.
Creditas Solutions: Gurugram-based fintech startup, Creditas Solutions, raised an undisclosed amount in a Pre-Series A funding round led by its existing investor 1Crowd, an equity crowdfunding platform. The startup plans to use the latest funding for expansion of the team, data science capabilities and to make investments in technology, particularly to focus on providing banks with a single platform to manage the entire delinquency cycle.
USPL: Bengaluru-based fashion startup Universal Sportsbiz Pvt Ltd (USPL) raised $4.64 Mn (INR 30 Cr) in venture debt funding from newly launched venture debt fund Alteria Capital. The company plans to use the funding to invest in 80-100 startups in the course of next three to four years.
Roadcast: Delhi-based online vehicle tracking platform Roadcast raised $250K in an angel round of funding from high-net-worth individuals from the United Arab Emirates. The startup plans to use the funding to scale its operations across major cities in India and further expand its research and development programme, hiring technology talent and building infrastructure for its operations.
DelyBazar: Kolkata-based Delybazar, a raw meat etailer, raised $300K (INR 2 Cr) in a Pre-Series A round of funding from a clutch of investors. The startup plans to use the funding to expand its operations in cities like Bhubaneswar, Hyderabad and Bengaluru.
FactorDaily: Bengaluru-based news media startup FactorDaily raised $116.65K (INR 76 Lakhs) from existing investors, Vijay Shekhar Sharma and Girish Mathrubootham in an extended series A funding round. The company last raised $1 Mn in funding in May 2016.
Planys Technologies: Chennai-based underwater robotics and diagnostics startup Planys Technologies raised $151.9K (INR 99 Lakh) from Oil and Natural Gas Corporation in what appears to be a part of the Series A round.
Predible Health: Artificial Intelligence-based cancer radiology platform Predible Health raised $35.3K (INR 23 Lakh) from the Hyderabad-based incubator, IKP Knowledge Park. Earlier in the month, Unitus Seed Fund invested an undisclosed amount in the company. At the time, the startup had planned to use the funding to scale its cancer AI platform as well as invest in regulatory approvals for its existing products.
The Ken: Bengaluru-based business news platform raised $225.63K (INR 1.47 Cr) from a set of HNIs, Siddharth Bhammar (Executive Director – JP Morgan), Anchal Jain(Portfolio Manager- Balyasny Asset Management and former MD FX Options – JP Morgan), and Murali A (MD – Graticule Asset Management Asia and ex-Fortis).
Survaider: Bengaluru-based customer engagement platform raised $276.28K(INR 1.8 Cr) from Axilor Ventures, Pratithi Trust, and The Chennai Angels in a seed round.
V Resorts: Noida-based resort management startup raised $271.63 (INR 1.77 Cr) between January and March this year from existing investor, RB Investments.
Myra: Bengaluru-based Myra, an online pharmacy, raised $1.84 Mn (INR 12 Cr) in funding led by Tokyo-headquartered management consulting firm Dream Incubator. Others who participated in the round were its existing investors Matrix Partners and Times Internet. It has been suggested that the startup will use the funding to fund its expansion in other geographies.
Benepik: Gurugram-based HRTech startup Benepik that provides a mobile-based solution for Employee Communication, Engagement, Rewards and Recognition, has raised an undisclosed amount in seed funding. The funding round was led by a group of investors including Vishal Bali, Yogesh Misra, and a Delhi based HNI. The startup claims to have over 15 clients across Financial Services, Consumer Appliances, Automotive and Manufacturing among others. And as part of its Employee Benefits portfolio, it has partnered with 1200+ merchants to offer preferred pricing to its corporate customers.
Indian Startup Acquisitions Of The Week
- Japanese investment giant SoftBank Group, along with global financial services firm Morgan Stanley and Singapore’s state-run investment firm Temasek might acquire one-third stake in Mumbai-headquartered payments bank and financial technology solutions provider Financial Information and Network Operations (FINO). For this, the company is expected to be valued at $308 Mn (INR 2,000 Cr).
- Homegrown cab hailing company Ola might acquire Mumbai-based Ridlr, a public transport app startup. With this, the company aims to improve its navigation technology and expand its services.
- Ola is in talks to acquire Uber’s Indian operations and the deal will be facilitated by the common stakeholder, SoftBank. The finer details of the deal are still under discussion and will be revealed in the coming months. However, the person close to the possible deal said that with Uber targeting initial public offering in the US in 2019, it is necessary for the company to cut off its losses, which the SoftBank has been continuously focussing on.
Other Developments Of The Week
- Nandan Nilekani and Sanjeev Aggarwal owned Fundamentum raised an initial investment of $20 Mn from CDPQ, a Canada-based institutional investor, for its first growth fund “Fundamentum Partnership – Fund I”.Beyond this, CDPQ will also explore direct investments in Fundamentum’s portfolio companies.
- Microsoft Ventures is looking to open an office and invest in tech startups using new age technologies like autonomous vehicles, Internet of Things (IoT) and Blockchain.Till now, Microsoft Ventures has backed over 45 startups globally. Also, Microsoft India claimed that it is helping 650 India-based partners use the Microsoft cognitive services, IoT, AI and machine learning platforms to build solutions for India.
- SEBI has planned to amend and ease the game rules of angel funding to revive the same. The regulator is also considering to raise the maximum period of accepting funds from an angel investor to five years from the present limit of three years.
- Quona Capital, the Washington-based fintech impact investor, is now en route to raising its Fund III. It is also planning to broaden the scope of its investment portfolio by leveraging fintech to include sectors as diverse as education, healthcare and insurance and small business.
- Global energy major Shell selected five startups for the first cohort of its Shell E4(Energising and Enabling Energy Entrepreneurs) accelerator programme. The five selected startups are Detect Technologies, ION Energy, IoTrek, Trashcon and Ossus Biorenewables.
- New York-headquartered technology hedge fund Coatue Management is reportedly holding discussions with a couple of other investors to pump $50 Mn-$100 Mn in homegrown online food delivery startup Swiggy. This comes two months after the Swiggy raised $100 Mn in Series F funding round led by Naspers at a valuation of $700 Mn.
- Mumbai-based mid-market private equity firm SeaLink Capital Partners has closed its maiden fund at $315 Mn (INR 2,045.45 Cr). The amount has been raised from a clutch of family offices as well as business leaders based in India, North America, Europe and Southeast Asia
- Venture Catalysts launched its operations in Jaipur and hosted panel discussions on angel investment and its opportunities, with a specific focus on Rajasthan. With this, it plans to bring in about 50+ investors to be a part of the VCats angel network and gradually add more angels over the coming months.
- SAP SE has signed a Statement of Intent (SOI) with NITI Aayog’s Atal Innovation Mission (AIM), to adopt 100 Atal Tinkering Laboratories (ATL) to promote science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education among secondary school children across India.
- Gurugram-based coworking space incubator Huddle raised $300K from industry experts and investors from the bay area and Singapore. The investment comes with a partnership interest in order to expand
Huddle’s model of pairing each startup with a dedicated industry expert as their Huddle mentor.
- NASSCOM announced that six of its incubated startups have been selected for the 2018 batch of Israel’s MassChallenge accelerator. Intello Labs Pvt. Ltd., Olivewear Pvt. Ltd., OCEO WATER, S&I Engineering Solutions Pvt. Ltd., Streamingo, and Ziroh Labs, will join a cohort of the early-stage startups in Jerusalem this April.
- Naspers announced to sell off 190 Mn shares (around 2% stake) in Chinese Internet giant Tencent gaining $10 Bn as part of the sale proceeds. Post the share sale, Naspers’ shareholding in Tencent reduced from 33.2% to 31.2%.
- SEBI board has approved the amendments to Alternative Investment Funds (AIF) regulations with respect to “angel funds” after recommendations of its working group. Also, the minimum corpus size required for an angel fund to register with SEBI will now be $770.5K (INR 5 Cr) and the maximum period of accepting funds from an angel investor has been raised to five years.
Stay tuned for the next edition of Funding Galore: Indian Startup Funding Of The Week!