Sequoia India has invested $6 Mn in artificial intelligence (AI) powered enterprise SaaS company Samya.AI as a part of the seed-stage funding round.
Founded in September 2019 by Shailendra Singh, Deepinder Dhingra and Pavan Palety, Bengaluru-based Samya.AI says it delivers revenue growth to fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) and consumer packaged goods (CPG) brands using AI algorithms to address issues.
Besides Sequoia India, Junglee.com founder and Helion Ventures cofounder Ashish Gupta, G100 Companies partner and former P&G president Deb Henretta, Kradle Ventures and Antuit founder Arijit Sengupta, former Antuit CEO Deborah Kops, MarketsandMarkets founder Sandeep Sugla also participated in this round.
Samya.AI’s Proposition For FMCG Brands
Since CPG goods such as food, beverages, cosmetics and cleaning products, which fall under the broader FMCG umbrella, are used and replaced quickly, brands need to keep a vigilant eye on demand and supply in this domain.
“Demand-supply interactions are becoming very unpredictable and vulnerable, resulting in huge lost revenue opportunity. This trend will continue unless addressed proactively, especially when a large number of CPG companies have been facing saturating growth”, said Samya.AI cofounder and CEO Shailendra Singh.
The company believes that AI and machine learning tools such as deep learning, probabilistic machine learning and reinforcement learning can tackle challenges such as revenue leakages in the FMCG and CPG segments. Samya.AI claimed that it brings a 10x improvement in terms of revenue generation for CPG brands and is currently running proof-of-value engagements with a few Fortune 500 companies.
Many FMCG and consumer packaged goods companies in India are witnessing lesser growth this year, A survey on consumer spending, which was leaked in late 2019 but dismissed by the central government for vague reasons, said consumer spending or consumption in India has dropped for the first time in over four decades in 2017-18.
Calling it a “draft” report, the government simply scrapped the survey, citing ‘data quality issues’, but the reality is that brands in this segment could use some revenue boost across geographies.
Shailendra Singh, managing director at Sequoia India, said Samya has the potential to be one of the leading cross-border AI SaaS companies in India and that the results from the company’s pilots with global CPG or FMCG companies have been promising.
According to a report by Cbinsights, the CPG industry faces other challenges such as shy investors, changing consumer tastes, high competition and disparate distribution strategies, which does not help retail or ecommerce partners. The report stated that tech companies are forcing CPG brands to rethink their marketing strategies and react to new trends. In addition, the report also noted that the way people discover things is also changing.
According to Samya, the global consumer packaged goods (CPG) industry is losing 8%-10% revenue growth potential due to challenges in gaining increased scale, which increases the complexity and volatility of demand and supply. This loss is estimated to be $150Bn in the US alone, and Samya.AI is looking to grab a big share of that with this healthy funding round.
“In the initial phase, we are being very selective about partnering with visionary customers as this needs close collaboration with multiple stakeholders. In the long term we want to build a large and diverse ecosystem of partners and advisors who can help us drive customer success globally”, said Palety, Samya.AI cofounder and chief customer officer.