Funding Galore: Startup Fundings Of The Week [12 September – 17 September]

Funding Galore: Startup Fundings Of The Week [12 September – 17 September]

Gurgaon-based online payment service provider PayU acquired its rival online payment gateway CitrusPay. The deal was closed at $130 Mn, making it by far the biggest M&A cash deal in Indian fintech.

Post-completion, Citrus Pay will be wholly-owned by Naspers. Amrish Rau, MD, Citrus Pay, will become the CEO of PayU in India. He will report to PayU Global CEO, Laurent le Moal, and will lead the entrepreneurial management team across PayU and Citrus Pay. Citrus Pay founder Jitendra Gupta will drive PayU’s fintech foray into credit through Citrus Pay’s offering Lazypay, while PayU co-founders Shailaz Nag and Nitin Gupta will focus on new areas of growth through bank alliances and will help complete the transition respectively.

This week 16 startups raised $17 Mn in funding altogether. (Funding amount is based on the startups that disclosed their funding.)

Startup Fundings of The Week

Ideachakki: Delhi-based foodtech venture IdeaChakki raised an undisclosed amount of funding from Ratan Tata. It also partnered with Enablers for their next round of funding. The funds raised will primarily be used for expansion into new geography along with building the in-house team and strengthening the technology.

Findow: Fashion discovery app Findow raised an undisclosed amount of funding from Raj Singh Bhandal, Director, Next Media Works. The funds raised will be used to grow the brand in metros and key Tier II cities. It will also be used to elevate marketing and branding exercises and to reach a wider audience.

Stoodnt: Palo Alto-based edtech startup Stoodnt raised an undisclosed amount of funding from Rajan Anandan, Vice-President, Google, Southeast Asia and India. It will use the raised funding to enhance its user experience, product development and to expand the user base. The platform leverages data, technology, and people to provide a solution to make the college admission process easier.

Glam Studios: Noida-based chain of standardised salons Glam Studios secured $299K angel funding from Pradeep Mirani and others. Other investors who participated in the round included Aqeel Ahmed, Anand Ladsariya, Nitin Agarwal. The funding will be used for the company’s expansion, operations, and technology. It also aims at acquiring over 500 salons by the end of the current financial year.

Nykaa: Online cosmetic and wellness retailer Nykaa raised about $12 Mn in a fresh round of fundraising led by Hero MotoCorp MD Sunil Munjal and the Mariwala family (Marico). A few existing investors also participated in this fourth round of fundraising. The funds will be utilised for expanding operations and to add more brands under the label.

Purple Style: Mumbai-based personal styling startup, Purple Style Labs, raised about $448K seed funding via LetsVenture. The round was led by Augment Ventures and Rahul Kayan (Calcutta Angels Network). Other investors who participated in this round include Nikhil Golcha (Member, Calcutta Angels Network); Operator VC; Shubham Gupta (VP – Sales, Nomura – Singapore); and Roy Kwan (Director of Sales, Deutsche Bank, Hong Kong). The startup will use the funding to further develop technology both on enterprise and end consumer side and increase the number of designers and stylists associated with the company.

KarmaCircles: Peer-to-peer social learning platform, KarmaCircles raised an undisclosed amount in Seed funding at a valuation of $3 Mn from angel investors. Investors who participated in the round include Harinder Takhar, Zain Raj, Dr. Prasad Kaipa, Abaran Deep, Aseem Sood and Mustafa Patni. The funding will be used to increase user engagement and to roll out the enterprise version of the app.

Poshtick: Noida-based health & wellness startup Poshtick raised $450K funding from two HNIs, Bhavya Sharma and Amit Nagar. The funding will be utilised for product development, developing human resource capabilities and making an effective supply chain mechanism.

CureInstant: Social health networking website Cureinstant raised $150K in Seed funding from Dr. Rameshwar Kumar. The funding will be used to enhance and develop the website’s network of healthtech professionals.

ShoeKonnect: An Agra-based business-to-business (B2B) marketplace for leather products ShoeKonnect raised an undisclosed amount in an angel round of funding from Indian Angels Network (IAN), according to TechCircle. The firm plans to use the capital for technology enhancement, marketing, brand building, and team expansion.

LensPick: Ecommerce platform for eye wear, LensPick raised a second round of funding from US-based Scadea Solutions Inc. With this round of funding, Scadea Solutions will acquire a 10% stake in LensPick at a valuation of $5 Mn. The funding will be used for inventory enhancement and technology up gradation, as part of the company’s plans to increase its online presence.

FloCareer: Bengaluru-based talent acquisition startup FloCareer raised $150K Seed funding from senior officials in the technology segment from US and India. Balasubramanian Krishnamurthy, former VP-Engineering of SAP, and Sidhartha Hazarika, a technology evangelist from the US, also participated in this round. The startup will use the funding to build and strengthen its offerings. It aims to become the  largest aggregator of crowd mentoring, self-learning and interview offloading.

Zeroinfy: Kolkata-based online study platform Zeroinfy raised an undisclosed amount in Seed funding from Calcutta Angels Network (CAN). In this cash and stock deal, CAN has acquired a 10% stake in the company. The funding will be used for marketing and increasing the company’s outreach to Tier II and Tier III cities. It will also be used to enhance its technology and develop a mobile app. It also plans to add more courses on its platform.

Nearbuy: Gurgaon-based deals and coupons website Nearbuy (formerly Groupon India) raised about $2 Mn venture debt from BlackSoil Capital Private limited. The startup aims at utilising the capital for investing in customer and merchant technology.

GoPigeon: Bengaluru-based on-demand logistics service provider GoPigeon has raised $1.5 Mn in a Pre-Series A funding round from Nexus Venture Partners. The funds will be used for strengthening the team and enhancing technology.

inFeedo: Employee engagement platform, inFeedo, raised an angel round of funding led by Dheeraj Jain, Managing Partner at Redcliffe Capital, a UK-based hedge fund. The startup is planning to close the round at $150K.

Acquisitions Of The Week

  • Quikr acquired Bengaluru-based mobile marketplace for beauty services, StayGlad. With this, the 100-member team of StayGlad, including its founders and stylists will now be a part of AtHomeDiva.
  • Mumbai-based digital advertising network Fork Media acquired a majority stake in adtech firm Inuxu for $3 Mn (INR 20 Cr) in a cash and stock deal. The deal will give Fork Media 51% equity in Inuxu.
  • Bengaluru-based ecommerce platform that caters to businesses DealBerg Technologies Pvt. Ltd acqui-hired another online B2B platform WeAreGadgets. Other terms and details of the deal remain undisclosed.
  • SHEROES, a jobs and career community for women, has acquired health counselling platform LoveDoctor. With this acquisition, LoveDoctor founder and CEO Avani Parekh will join SHEROES as the Director of Community and Empathy, according to an official statement.

Also, Cryptopy Technologies Pvt Ltd, which runs Grabhouse initiated talks with online hotel aggregator OYO and online home rental startup NestAway Technologies Pvt. Ltd. A person close to the development stated that the deal is expected to be closed at $5 Mn-$8 Mn.

Realty portal Housing has struck a partnership with rival PropTiger, in a likely step towards a potential merger between the Mumbai- and Gurugram-based companies, according to three people directly aware of the development.

AskMe MD Sanjeev Gupta has sought out Malaysia-based Astro Group, the majority shareholders in AskMe, with an offer for a management buyout again. Astro currently holds 98.5% stake, through its fully-owned subsidiary Astro Entertainment Network Ltd, whereas Sanjeev Gupta holds less than 1% in the company.

Other Developments Of The Week

  • Seven public sector oil companies are coming together to launch a $15 Mn startup fund. This includes Indian Oil Corp. Ltd, Bharat Petroleum Corp. Ltd, Hindustan Petroleum Corp. Ltd, Gail India Ltd, Oil India Ltd, Engineers India Ltd and Oil, and Natural Gas Corp. Ltd.
  • Turakhia brothers-led technology company Directi plans to invest $110 Mn in four newer ventures. There are also plans to buy a 1 lakh sq. ft. building in Bengaluru to accommodate the company’s expansion plans.
  • In an attempt to boost Karnataka’s startup ecosystem, the state’s IT Minister, Priyank Kharge recently announced a fund of $1.2 Mn (INR 8 Cr) towards Karnataka’s Startup Cell. According to an official statement, the Cell has received around 1,400 registrations in the last two months itself.
  • SAP SE is committing another $1 Bn to invest in startups and early stage venture firms. Through Sapphire Ventures, SAP will plow $700 Mn into startups and $300 Mn indirectly via stakes in a dozen venture firms worldwide.
  • VC firm Sequoia Capital is looking to rationalise its India portfolio of around 130 firms, by selling its stake in eight of them. It has reportedly been holding talks for the past few months with several funds specialising in secondary transactions, two sources close to the development said, asking not to be identified.
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