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Funding Galore: Startup Fundings Of The Week [23 January – 28 January]

Funding Galore: Startup Fundings Of The Week [23 January – 28 January]

Indian ecommerce giant Flipkart has had a rough 2016 in terms of valuation downfall. Looks like 2017 isn’t going very well for it, as well. Fidelitys managed mutual fund has now slashed its valuation by 36.1%. The company is now currently valued at $5.56 Bn.

Next on, just a day before its scheduled IPO, Jyoti Bansal sold his company AppDynamics, an application monitoring and software company, to Cisco, for $3.7 Bn. Jyoti had a 14% stake in AppDynamics which translates into a payout of $525 Mn. Following the acquisition, he will reportedly invest a part of the $525 Mn proceeds from selling his company to Cisco, towards funding startups in Silicon Valley and in India.

This week 15 startups raised around $74 Mn in funding altogether. (Funding amount is based on startups that disclosed their funding)

Startup Fundings Of The Week

RML AgTech: RML AgTech, formerly known as Reuters Market Light raised $4 Mn from IvyCap Ventures, a private equity firm. The funds were raised in multiple tranches from IvyCap Ventures in 2016. The company plans to utilise the money to strengthen its IT backbone and to bring in new products and features on its current offerings.

Wishberry: Crowdfunding platform Wishberry secured an undisclosed amount in its Pre-Series A round of funding led by iSPIRT co-founder Sharad Sharma. The round also saw the participation of Rajan Anandan (MD, Google India), Amit Ranjan (co-founder, SlideShare), Alok Mittal (founding member, IAN), Venkat S Raju and several other investors from LetsVenture.

Aryaka: Aryaka, a global SD-WAN (Software-Defined Wide Area Network) and cloud computing platform secured $45 Mn in Series D round of funding. The investment was led by Third Point Ventures and Deutsche Telekom Capital Partners (DTCP), along with the participation of existing investors. Post the investment, Aidan Cullen, formerly associated with CliQr Technologies will join Aryaka’s leadership team as Chief Financial Officer.

LetsTransport: Bengaluru-based logistics startup, LetsTransport raised $4 Mn (INR 27 Cr) in its Series A round of funding. The latest round of funding was led by Neelesh Bhatnagar, former CEO of Landmark Arabia along with GMO, a Japan-based payment gateway company.

NowFloats: NowFloats, a digital enabler of Small and Medium Businesses (SME) business presence raised $10 Mn in its Series B round of funding from Iron Pillar Capital and IIFL, along with existing investors Blume Ventures & Omidyar Network. IIFL invested through its Seed Ventures Fund I & Cash Opportunities Fund. The startup plans to use the proceeds for sharpening its technology stack that drives customer support which the company is aiming to be a hybrid of automated and human interaction. Also, NowFloats plans to enable the larger enterprises to leverage automated SEO on top of their existing websites. Additionally, it will also intensify its services for the small and medium enterprises and expand further into the Tier II and Tier III cities in the country.

Khel Now: Mobile-based social networking platform for sports, Khel Now received $500K in funding from Thailand-based Indochine International Co. Ltd. The startup plans to use the funds to expand its network and services across Southeast Asian countries. The company is also planning to add sports such as tennis, basketball, badminton, and Thai martial arts such as Muay Thai on its platform.

CRON Systems: IoT-based border security solutions provider CRON Systems secured an undisclosed amount in its Pre-Series A round of funding from early-stage VC firm, YourNest. This is YourNest’s maiden investment from its recently launched investment fund, Fund II. The raised funds will be used to develop its R&D team, hiring new members, and venture into new markets across the Middle East, Africa, and Europe.

messaGif: A social messaging platform, messaGif, added $ 50K to its initial angel investment by an early Google employee. The company will utilise the funds to upgrade technology, research & development and marketing. The startup is focused on specific Indian content in 9 regional languages and is one of the largest Gif aggregators in the world.

SmarterHi: IoT-based security services provider, SmarterHi Communications secured an undisclosed amount of funding from a Singapore-based investor for a minority stake. The funding will be used to develop its R&D, sales, and marketing team.

Airmed: Ahmedabad-based healthcare lab aggregator, Airmed Path Labs secured $1.4 Mn (INR 10 Cr) from Bennet, Coleman and Co. Ltd.’s (BCCL) investment handle, Brand Capital. The secured funds will be deployed towards expansion and strengthening its brand.

99Games: Udupi-based gaming startup 99Games raised an undisclosed amount of funding from Japanese investment firm Dream Incubator, along with participation from existing investors Kalaari Capital and Ascent Capital. This is Dream Incubator’s debut investment in India. The first female-focussed game to be launched is a puzzle strategy game focused on cooking. However, details about the second game, which will be launched in the second half of the year, is yet to be disclosed.

BabyOnBoard: Bengaluru-based online baby journal creating app BabyOnBoard got selected for Facebook’s developer-focused programme “FbStart” which caters to the early-stage, mobile-focused startups. As part of the programme, the startup will be provided with services & credits worth $40,000. The services include mentorship from Facebook’s engineering teams and services from its partners like Amazon Web Services, Dropbox, Adobe, and MailChimp.

TOGEDR: Gurugram-based social networking app TOGEDR got selected for Facebook’s developer-focused programme “FbStart” which caters to the early-stage, mobile-focused startups. As part of the programme, the startup will be provided with services & credits worth $40,000.

Infibeam: Bennett, Coleman and Company Ltd (BCCL) announced to invest $8.8 Mn (INR 60 Cr) in Ahmedabad-based e-tailer Infibeam in exchange for equity. Following the transaction, BCCL’s stake in Infibeam is likely to go up from the current 1.4% to around 2.2%.

99PerHour: On-demand hyperlocal services provider, 99PerHour secured Seed funding of $300K from a US-based angel investor, V Aanand R. The company plans to utilise these funds to expand its service categories from 18 to 100 across – utility, professional, and personnel services.

In another development, online entertainment ticketing brand BookMyShow acquired online ticketing platform MastiTickets for an undisclosed amount in an all-cash deal. As per the terms of the transaction, MastiTickets will now transfer its key assets along with existing cinema partnerships to BookMyShow. With the acquisition, BookMyShow aims to tap into the regional markets, especially Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, according to an official statement. BookMyShow has already partnered with 4,000 screens across India.

Other Developments

  • Bengaluru-based non-profit The Nudge Foundation announced to launch the first-ever incubator to support non-profit ventures working towards poverty alleviation. The foundation plans to invest over $7.3 Mn(INR 50 Cr) to incubate and support over 100 non-profit startups through the programme over the next five years.
  • NUMA, a French accelerator announced the opening of its second batch of startups from Bengaluru. It has also announced the opening of its branches in Berlin and New York.
  • Capgemini, a French multinational corporation announced the launch of its InnovatorsRace50, a worldwide competition for early-stage startups.The contest will allow startups to showcase the potential of their products, services, or innovative uses of their disruptive technologies.
  • CIO Angel Network (CAN) made its first successful exit in investments, with Bengaluru-based security solution provider InstaSafe, for an undisclosed amount within 18 months of backing the startup. BSE-listed ABM Knowledgeware has made an undisclosed investment in the startup after buying the secondary stake from CAN. This deal will allow ABM Knowledgeware to add a slew of technology products of Instasafe. The transaction involves ABM buying the secondary stake from angel investors and also infusing fresh primary funds into Instasafe.
  • German-based incubator Rocket Internet closed a new fund at a cap of $1 Bn. This fund is the biggest VC fund to be raised out of Europe, according to the company. It will focus on early- and late-stage investments in the startup space and is called Rocket Internet Capital Partners (RICP) fund.
  • Startupbootcamp FinTech, the global accelerator for fintech startups, announced the names of the 10 startups that will join its inaugural programme in Mumbai. The cohort was selected after a final evaluation over three days called ‘Selection Days.’
  • IT major Infosys invested a little over $62 Mn from its $500 Mn Innovation fund in startups operating in spaces such as IoT, automation, and drones. The Innovation fund was set up in 2013 with a corpus of $100 Mn earmarked for startups and other innovative businesses outside the company. $62.18 Mn has been invested so far in a dozen startups, which include Stellaris Venture Partners, Unsilo, Trifacta, Cloudyn, and TidalScale.
  • Based in Mauritius, Indian focussed venture fund Helion Venture Partners exited the dental care startup Today’s Health Care, three years after pouring in $3.9 Mn (INR 27 Cr) for a 40% stake in the latter. The Clove Dental Chain run by Star Dental has bought its share.