We bring to you the latest edition of Funding Galore: Indian Startup Funding Of The Week!
This week Bengaluru-based hyperlocal grocery startup, BigBasket, finally closed its $150 Mn Series F funding round. With the latest round, the company has comfortably crossed into unicorn territory, the first and only online grocer to achieve the distinction in India.
The company will use the funds towards growth through further penetration into existing markets with more investments in the first mile, scaling-up of its supply chain and for developing new reseller channels.
Further, Mukesh Bansal and Ankit Nagori-led fitness startup Cure.fit raised $75 Mn (INR 521 Cr) from Piramal Group’s Anand Piramal, Accel Growth, Kalaari Capital, IDG Ventures India. Cure.fit uses an online-offline model to offer physical fitness (Cult.fit), mental fitness (Mind.fit), nutrition (Eat.fit), with a primary care vertical (Care.fit) coming soon.
In all this week, 20 startups raised $320.16 Mn funding and three startup acquisitions took place in the Indian startup ecosystem. (This funding report is based on startups that disclosed funding amount.)
Indian Startup Fundings Of The Week
HealthKart: Gurugram-based digital nutrition platform HealthKart raised $25 Mn from Sofina in a fresh round of financing. The company said it would use the funds to further expand its store network, and plans to use data science and artificial intelligence (AI) to improve its customer-facing offerings.
Locus: Bengaluru-based logistics optimisation startup Locus secured $20 Mn in a funding round led by New York-based hedge fund Falcon Edge, VC firm Tiger Global and its existing investors. The details around the funding round and fund allotment are yet to be disclosed. The latest round takes the total funding of Locus to $26.75 Mn.
Peel-Works: Mumbai-based SaaS platform Peel-Works raised $5 Mn in a Series B funding round led by Equanimity Investments (Ventures), along with HDFC Bank, Bruno Raschle and existing investors Unilever Ventures, Chiratae Ventures and Inventus Capital India. The funding will help Peel-Works strengthen its retail management platform Taikee. Taikee will utilise these funds to expand its footprint to other geographical markets. The funds will also help the company expand business across 25 cities and onboard 100K retailers over the next six to twelve months.
Ola Electric Mobility: Ola Electric Mobility, electric unit of Indian ride hailing unicorn Ola, raised an undisclosed amount of funding from Ratan Tata, chairman emeritus of Tata Sons. The company plans to use the latest funding to fund its mission to make electric mobility viable at scale.
Kinara Capital: Bengaluru-based digital lending company Kinara Capital raised $14.2 Mn (INR 100 Cr) from private equity and impact investors, Gaja Capital, GAWA Capital, Michael & Susan Dell Foundation and Patamar Capital. The funds will help the company accelerate its growth in new and existing markets and increase its investment in technology to improve customer experience and assess credit decisions at a faster rate.
Chumbak: Bengaluru-based lifestyle brand Chumbak raised $10.02 Mn (INR 70 Cr) in a Series D round. The round was led by private equity fund Gaja Capital with participation from venture capital funds Matrix Partners and Seedfund. The company plans to double the number of stores by next year and will focus on metros primarily. The funds will also help the company expand its presence in Tier 2 cities.
CollegeDekho: Gurugram-based edtech startup CollegeDekho raised $8 Mn (INR 55.6 Cr) in its Series B funding round from its existing investors GirnarSoft and Man Capital, the investment arm of London-based Mansour Group. The startup will use the funds for geographical expansion, technology and branding. The company is focused towards expanding its services in Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities such as Pune, Jaipur, Nagpur and Bhopal.
Fitternity: Mumbai-based fitness discovery and booking startup Fitternity raised $4 Mn in a fresh funding round from consumer-focused venture fund Sixth Sense Ventures. The startup now plans to scale across three major focus areas, including adding offerings in ancillary categories across sports and preventive healthcare, scaling up the supply base in top 20 cities and managing inventory at scale.
TagBox: Bengaluru-based supply chain startup TagBox raised $3.85 Mn in its Series A funding round led by auto manufacturer TVS Motor Company and its Singapore based subsidiary, TVS Motor (Singapore) Pte. Limited. The funds will be utilised to strengthen product innovation and research and development. It is also aiming to expand its services to the global market. With this round, IAN & the IAN Fund which claims to have invested INR 3.5 Cr in Tagbox till date exited the company after receiving the 3X return within 18 months of investment.
Skillenza: Bengaluru-based HRTech startup Skillenza closed a $1 Mn Pre-Series A funding round led by CBA Capital’s Education Catalyst Fund (ECF) with participation from Let’sVenture, CIO Angel Network, Keiretsu forum, Hyderabad Angels and its existing investors including Blume Ventures, and Tracxn Labs. The startup’s target is to grow its user base to 1 Mn by 2020 and engage students and professionals from Tier 2 and 3 cities. Also, the HRTech startup is looking to introduce a certification programme for the developers.
Dunzo: Bengaluru-headquartered hyperlocal concierge app Dunzo raised $713.9K (INR 5 Cr) from Centrum, through its private equity fund, Kalpavriksh. The startup is currently looking to raise nearly $50 Mn from investors. It was also closing INR 80 Cr Series C funding round to further its business.
The Ayurveda Experience: Delhi-based online Ayurveda content and products company, The Ayurveda Experience, raised $1.42 Mn (INR 10 Cr) from Centrum, through its private equity fund, Kalpavriksh. The company is looking to scale up its research and development facility to further strengthen its product portfolio and increase its geographic reach.
BakBuck: Mumbai-based vernacular social contesting women-centric platform BakBuck raised an undisclosed amount of funding from Nazara Technologies. Bakbuck shall use these funds to enhance product development, acquire new users and build a strong community of women while delivering unique gaming and social contesting experiences.
SQUATS: Pune-based online fitness community SQUATS raised an undisclosed investment from Bollywood actor, producer, and entrepreneur Suniel Shetty. The funds will help company enhance its underlying technological framework, strengthen its team, and expand its pan-India operations.
Classplus: Delhi-based edtech startup Classplus raised $1.6 Mn in its Pre-Series A funding round led by Times Internet and GREE ventures. Spiral Ventures, a Japanese VC firm, and existing investor, Rising Stars Fund. The company plans to use the funds to expand their product offerings, ramp up their leadership team and scale their operations.
Wizikey: Delhi-based tech-driven PR solutions startup Wizikey raised $356.6K (INR 2.5 Cr) from Indian Angel Network. IAN investors Alok Mittal (cofounder and CEO, Indifi Technologies), Ambarish Raghuvanshi (former CFO, Info Edge), and Saumya Meattle (Investor Director – IAN) led the funding round. The funds will be used to further develop its product offerings and scaling it to cover multiple vernacular languages.
CapBuild Clinical Skills: Delhi-based CapBuild Clinical Skills raised an undisclosed amount of funding from early stage investment micro VC and health sector accelerator, HealthStart India. The funds will help the company grow through depth by penetrating newer geographies, and strengthening their solution and technology for their existing clientele.
Rare Planet: Kolkata-based souvenir brand Rare Planet raised an undisclosed amount of seed funding from Venture Catalysts. The funds will be utilised to strengthen its team and create a strong Pan-India brand identity.
Indian Startup Acquisitions Of The Week
- Bengaluru-headquartered epharmacy startup Medlife acquired Bengaluru-based medicine delivery startup Myra Medicines for an undisclosed amount. The acquisition will support Medlife’s pharmacy business and help it accrue profits. At the same time, Medlife will consolidate and strengthen the delivery of medicines and extend the reach to more Indian cities.
- Delhi-based edtech startup Adda247 acquired the Success Ease YouTube channel for an undisclosed amount. The addition of the YouTube channel has strengthened the Adda247 Technical vertical, furthering the company’s aim to help more Indians achieve their dream jobs.
- Bengaluru-based esports company Mobile Premier League acquired Pune-based Crevise Technologies for an undisclosed amount. The deal consists of a combination of cash and equity and is more in the nature of an acquihire. Mukta Apahale and Atul Aphale, who founded Crevise Technologies in 2016, will lead the 10-member MPL team from Pune. Through the acquisition, MPL aims to utilize Crevise’s experience in DevOps and reliability engineering to make the platform more robust, agile, and reliable for its users.
Other Developments Of The Week
- Indian not-for-profit organisation, Wadhwani AI, will receive a $2 Mn grant from Google.org and is a part of Google’s AI for Social Good programme. Wadhwani AI uses artificial intelligence in the agricultural sector to prevent crop losses.
- Chennai-based healthtech startup Netmeds is reportedly in talks to raise a $100 Mn funding round. Swiss financial services company Credit Suisse is said to be the investment banker in this funding deal. The startup is a licensed pharmacy marketplace that offers authenticated prescription and over-the-counter (OTC) medicine digitally along with other health products.
- Ecommerce giant Flipkart has issued a $100 Mn (INR 700 Cr) worth employee stock ownership plan (ESOPS) for its senior and middle-level staff across Flipkart and Myntra-Jabong, in a move to hold onto its key talent. Employees have been allotted these new shares at a price of $125-$130 per unit and will see 25% of their stock vest after a year. Following this, monthly vesting will continue for three years.
- SoftBank is now looking to focus on early-stage startups. SoftBank Ventures Asia may invest $10 Mn – 20 Mn in the consumer internet space with a special focus on startups in healthcare, fintech and artificial intelligence segment.
- Japanese telecom conglomerate, SoftBank is planning to launch an initial public offering of its $100 Bn SoftBank Vision Fund. SoftBank is in touch with five to six banks about the potential listing of the fund. However, no formal declaration has been made yet and is neither expected in the near term.
- Tech giant Amazon is strengthening its data centre business in India by reinforcing Amazon Data Services India (ADSI) with an INR 1,380 Cr ($198.2 Mn) investment. This deal will not only help the company strengthen its data centre infrastructure in the country but it will also help it compete against the growing popularity of Alibaba Cloud in the Asia-Pacific region including India.
- New Delhi-based online travel startup EaseMyTrip is likely to raise funds between INR 500 Cr ($72 Mn) and INR 750 Cr ($108 Mn) via an initial public offering (IPO). The company has selected Axis Capital and JM Financial as the merchant bankers for its proposed IPO. The draft red herring prospectus is expected to be filed in June.
- Republic TV’s managing director and editor-in-chief Arnab Goswami has bought back a large chunk of shares held by Asianet News Media & Entertainment. Rajeev Chandrasekhar, who is a member of Parliament, and also a promoter of Asianet News Media & Entertainment, stated that he has made healthy returns on the investment.
Stay tuned for next week’s edition of Funding Galore: Indian Startup Funding Of The Week!