We bring to you the latest edition of Funding Galore: Indian Startup Funding of the week.
As PremjiInvest becomes the one to earn the most with the Flipkart-Walmart deal, making more than $130 Mn on its $25 Mn (INR 155 Cr) investment in Myntra in early 2014, Flipkart-Walmart deal continues to make buzz in the Indian startup ecosystem.
So far, one of the major investors in Flipkart and the announcer of the deal, SoftBank is in a tight spot and has been exploring its new investments in the country. SoftBank is now looking for a potential investment in Zomato as well as has also held an initial round of discussions to invest as much as $3 Bn in Paytm Mall. At the same time, SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son is now determined to set up Vision Fund II in the near future.
On the other side, SoftBank is further rethinking on its commitment to sell off its Flipkart stake. In any case, Walmart is ‘OK’ with Softbank’s decision and believe that SoftBank can continue as any other investor. Also, the Flipkart deal has raised red flags with questions on its co-founder Sachin Bansal’s exit.
Going further, this week seven startups in the Indian startup ecosystem raised around $60 Mn in funding altogether and five startup acquisitions took place. (The startup funding calculations are based on the startups that disclosed funding amount.)
Indian Startup Funding Of The Week
LenDenClub: Mumbai-based P2P lending startup LenDenClub raised $500K in Pre-Series A funding led by Artha Venture Fund. The startup plans to focus aggressively on product partnerships to expand their portfolio.
Open Financial Technologies: Bengaluru-based fintech startup Open Financial Technologies raised an undisclosed amount of pre-series A funding led by Unicorn India Ventures and Recruit Co. Ltd, through its investment subsidiary RSP India Fund LLC. The startup plans to use the funding to accelerate customer acquisition and growth and enhance its core platform.
Droom: Gurugram-headquartered Automobile marketplace Droom raised $30 Mn in Series D round of funding led by Toyota Tsusho Corporation (TTC), a Toyota Group Corporation company and Japan-based Digital Garage. The startup plans to use the funding to further strengthen its position, make its ecosystem tools more scalable and advance its international expansion plans.
Mfine: Bengaluru-based AI focussed healthtech startup mfine raised $4.2 Mn in a Series A funding round led by Prime Venture Partners. Existing investors Stellaris Venture Partners, and healthcare entrepreneur Mayur Abhaya also participated in this funding round. The startup will use the fresh funding to build the hospital networks across cities and further strengthen its technology team.
SpringRole: Bengaluru-based job-listing startup SpringRole closed a $1.3 Mn private funding from its early investors – AlphaBlock Investments, investment and consulting firm DNA, Isaac Lee’s BlockWater, and Wavemaker Genesis. The startup plans to utilise the fund towards solving the challenges of hiring technical professionals for outsourcing – by using blockchain technology.
Nykaa: Mumbai-headquartered online beauty marketplace Nykaa raised $24.45 Mn (INR 165 Cr) in Series D funding round. The funding round is expected to help the startup fund its growth capital and expand its retail footprint. It further aims to fuel its plans towards expanding its offline presence.
Knudge.me: Bengaluru-based gamified social learning startup Knudge.me raised funds from Indian Angel Network. The startup plans to use the funds to build the product and focus on creating a global edutainment platform.
Indian Startup Acquisitions Of The Week
- Deutsche Bank acquired Mumbai-based fintech startup Quantiguous Solutions for an undisclosed amount. As part of the acquisition, Deutsche Bank will take over all employees of Quantiguous, “who will join the core team responsible for the development and roll-out of the transaction bank’s global API programme.”
- Mumbai-based B2B payments company PayMate acquired micro-lending institution Zaitech Technology Pvt Ltd (Z2P). With this acquisition, PayMate aims to speed up credit applications and the credit decision-making processes for small-medium enterprises (SMEs).
- M&S Partners-backed NeoStencil, an edtech startup, acquired TestCafe, an analytics-based test practice platform for an undisclosed amount. The company believes that TestCafe’s analytics-based testing is the perfect complement to its online coaching platform. And thus, combining the two will help its students prepare better, and make their preparation outcome-driven.
- Sequoia and Mayfield-backed Knowlarity Communications acquired Mumbai-based cloud telephony startup Sunoray Solution for an undisclosed amount. Knowlarity aims to utilise Sunoray’s understanding of the technological need of SMEs to target the enterprise customers.
- GiveIndia merged its operations with LetzChange to accelerate their shared vision of a strong giving culture in India. LetzChange believes that joining forces with GiveIndia will allow it to serve both donors and nonprofits with even better products in their efforts towards uplifting the poor.
Other Developments Of The Week
- Seedstars Delhi announced its batch of nine startups that will compete and represent India at the Seedstars World Competition in Lausanne, Switzerland among other 65 countries. These nine startups are Act It Out, Aether Biomedical, BYKUP, Curie Labs, Impel Labs, Love In Store, Navia Life Care, Str8bat and Wobot.
- Online travel aggregator MakeMyTrip has been infused with funds through a rights issue done by its Nasdaq-listed parent, valuing the Gurugram-based company at around $3.8 Bn (INR 26,000 Cr).
- The Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) is not impressed by the low disbursement of funds and has undertaken before a Parliamentary panel that it will not make any releases to fund manager SIDBI (Small Industries Development Bank of India) during FY18 and FY19. Of the $20.8 Mn (INR 141 Cr) disbursed to early-stage ventures till end-April, some 124 startups have been reported as beneficiaries through 27 AIFs.
- The RP-Sanjiv Goenka Group created a venture capital fund of $14.74 Mn (INR 1 Bn) to invest in fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) startups. Chairman Sanjiv Goenka has made this move considering the capital appreciation in the FMCG sector.
- Foxconn Technology Group announced another write-down of 40% of its $200 Mn investment in ecommerce company Snapdeal, which is owned and operated by Jasper Infotech. “As the recoverable amount of the investment in Jasper Infotech is minimal, the Group decided to make a further $40 Mn impairment loss as on December 31, 2017. As a result, JIPL represented no more shares of the Group’s total assets as on December 31, 2017,” the FIH 2017 annual report stated.
- Global MNC Oracle invited applications from technology startups for the next cohort (2018) of its accelerator program — Oracle Startup Cloud Accelerator — a residential program. The next-gen initiative is focused on helping enterprises and startups reimagine innovation and accelerate growth through partnerships and associations with the best in the ecosystem.
- IIM Ahmedabad’s CIIE (Center for Innovation, Incubation and Entrepreneurship) launched a $25 Mn Bharat Inclusion Initiative to incubate and seed-fund startups addressing India’s inclusion challenges through technology. It has received an initial commitment of $12.5 Mn from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation, and Omidyar Network.
- YourNest Venture Capital launched Entrepreneur-in-Residence programme to nurture, mentor and provide portfolio startups with access to relevant, experienced entrepreneurs. The YourNest EIR program will aim to support proven entrepreneurs with disruptive ideas to build successful ventures of the future.
- Bosch India launched the second batch of its startup engagement programme – ‘DNA 2.0’. The programme is designed to ‘Discover’ startups, ‘Nurture’ them and ‘Align’ them strategically with Bosch business objectives.
Stay tuned for the next edition of Funding Galore: Indian Startup Funding Of The Week!