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[Weekly funding roundup] Investments into startups remain muted at $31M

Thimmaya Poojary ( )

The funding into the Indian startup ecosystem continues to remain depressed as just $31 million was added in the third week of June and it has almost been at similar level when compared to previous week.


In the second week of June, the total investments into startups stood at $27 million.


The third week of June witnessed 18 deals with majority of them being in the early stage with a few in the growth categories. There were 14 deals in the early stage category with the remaining in the growth level.




As seen in the last couple of months, majority of the funding has been centred around seed, pre-Series A, Series A and B stages. Even in the third week of June, the other category deals which largely include seed stage had nine deals followed by seven in the pre-Series A. There were two deals in Series B.


Debt financing still remains muted with just one single deal during the week.

Key deal

A91 Partners will invest Rs 125 crore in Pushp (Brand) India Pvt. Ltd, an Indore-based B2C spices brands, according to a media report. This is the first fund raise for Pushp and the capital will be used for expanding and deepening the company's distribution network, expanding its sales team, and enhancing marketing initiatives to strengthen the brand across India.

Other deals

Myglamm has raised Rs 33 crore from its existing investors which include Tano India, L’Occitane, Bessemer among others through a compulsorily convertible preference share issue, according to a media report. This startup headquartered in Mumbai is a beauty and makeup products brand.


Mumbai-based rural fintech platform Jai Kisan has raised Rs 30 crore in the Pre-Series A round of funding led by Arkam Ventures (previously known as Unitary Helion), with participation from NABVENTURES Fund I (backed by NABARD). This is the first time NABVENTURES has invested in the startup. Existing investors such as Blume, Prophetic Ventures, and Better Capital also participated in the round, along with other prominent angel investors.


Gurugram-based Hoi Foods, which operates several cloud kitchens, has raised $2 million in a pre-Series A funding round led by 1Crowd as a follow up round, which also saw participation from Sprout, Angelist, Samar Singla – Founder of Jugnu, Jaideep Mehta – CEO of VCCircle, Mukund Kulashekaran – SVP of Business at UrbanClap, and others.


Venture debt fund Stride Ventures has invested Rs 10 crore in Bengaluru-based LetsTransport, an aggregator for fulfilling intra-city last-mile deliveries for enterprise customers. During the COVID-19 crisis, the startup raised a total of Rs 33 crore, signalling investor confidence in the new-age logistic players. Earlier this month, Blacksoil Capital had invested a similar amount in the startup. In May, InnoVen Capital announced an investment of Rs 13 crore.


Rainmatter, a fintech fund and incubator set up by online stock trading startup Zerodha, has invested Rs 3.5 crore in a Bengaluru-based online startup for fixed-income investments, GoldenPi. Launched in 2017 by Abhijit Roy and Samir Pratihar, GoldenPi acts as an aggregator for bonds and debentures across bond institutions, capital market divisions of banks and other players in the capital markets.


Indian cocktail brand Jimmy's Cocktails has raised $350,000 in seed funding led by Ekcle Ventures. Vidur Talwar, managing director at Mercedes-Benz T&T Motors, and Angad Bhatia, operations chief of Indiatimes Lifestyle Network, also participated in this funding round. Jimmy's Cocktails, which is operated by Radiohead Brands Pvt. Ltd, will use the funds to expand its product offering and boost its distribution footprint.


Delhi-based medtech startup Crimson Healthcare has raised a funding of Rs 1.75 crore from Mumbai Angels Network. The startup plans to utilise this funding for research and market expansion. Founded in 2015 by Pranav Chopra and Neeraj Kumar, this startup is focussed on improving ostomy care.


Bengaluru-based early stage edtech startup Edvizo has raised over $150,000 in seed round funding from Inflection Point Ventures. The startup plans to utilise these funds to strengthen its technical and sales team, besides acquiring more users and expanding to more cities. Launched in March 2018, Edvizo acts as an online marketplace to search, compare, and enroll students in the best institutes for competitive exams preparation.

Undisclosed deals

SARVA, a yoga-based wellness startup has raised an undisclosed amount of funding from ace cricketer and entrepreneur Shikhar Dhawan. SARVA so far has raised over $8 million in funding from investors such as David Giampaolo, an entrepreneur in the global health and fitness sector; Mark Mastrov, an entrepreneur, Jennifer Lopez, Alex Rodriguez, Zumba, Fireside Ventures and Mantra Capital. Bollywood celebrities Malaika Arora, Aishwaryaa R Dhanush, Shahid and Mira Kapoor also back the venture. 


Serial entrepreneur and actor Suniel Shetty has invested an undisclosed amount in the SAI-branded edtech venture Sai Estate Management and Skills Institute (SEMSI). Post the investment, SEMSI is estimated to be valued at around $80 million. SEMSI is an online platform that offers courses and certifications to groom individuals in an array of specialisations, including real estate, sales, and marketing, along with skill development programmes.


Industrial robotics startup Peppermint has raised an undisclosed amount of seed funding from Venture Catalysts and Naveen Kshatriya, Former Head of Castrol Asia and ANZ. The startup will use the funds to scale up its manufacturing, strengthen after-sales support infrastructure and foray into new markets.


Bharti Airtel has acquired a strategic stake in edtech startup Lattu Media Pvt Ltd (Lattu Kids) as part of the Airtel Startup Accelerator Program. Mumbai-based Lattu Kids, founded in 2016, specialises in digital learning tools for children. Its app, available for Android users, focusses on improving English vocabulary, English reading, and maths skills for children under the age of 10 years through entertaining, fun learning animated videos and games. The investment will enable Airtel to add edtech to its premium digital content portfolio and give distribution scale to Lattu Kids.


Targetone Innovations, which operates automobile maintenance and servicing startup GoMechanic, has raised funding from Pawan Munjal, the managing director and chief executive officer of Hero MotoCorp. The investment by Munjal was made in his personal capacity. This comes in addition to the company’s Series B funding round in December last year as part of which it raised $14.7 million.


Venture Catalysts invested an undisclosed amount into Pune-based GabbarDeals, an Online-to-Offline (O2O) platform for mobile phones and accessories. The funding will be used by the startup to strengthen its operations, expand its services, and build new partnerships. GabbarDeals was founded by serial entrepreneur Niraj Raka and co-founded by Poonam Gugale and Piyush Raka.


Bengaluru-based biotech startup Biomoneta has raised an undisclosed round of funding from Beyond Next Ventures (BNV) along with ArthaVida Ventures, and IVF specialist and angel investor, Dr Aniruddha Malpani. The company’s ZeBox technology helps create germ-free zones. It can be deployed in hospitals, clinics, homes, and offices to potentially arrest the spread of multiple infections, protecting patients, healthcare workers, and the community. 


New Delhi based agri-tech startup Concinnity Agro2o has raised funding from Mumbai Angels Network. The company, founded by Yash Vyas in 2018, says it develops products focussed on making hydroponics-based farming accessible to both small farmers and commercial institutions. The deal sum was not disclosed.

Overseas with India connect

Indian impact investor Aavishkaar Capital has invested more money in PT Tiga Elora Nusantara, which operates Indonesian omnichannel furniture retailer Fabelio, as part of the company’s Series C funding round. Fabelio raised $9 million (about Rs 68.47 crore) in the round.


Drishti Technologies has raised $25 million in its Series B financing round from US-based venture capital firm Sozo Ventures. Other investors such as Alpha Intelligence Capital, Toyota AI Ventures, Micron Ventures, Presidio Ventures, HELLA Ventures, as well as existing investors Emergence Capital, Benhamou Global Ventures, and Andreessen Horowitz, also participated in the funding round.


La Casa Ventures Inc., which operates Bengaluru and San Francisco-based CasaOne, has raised $50 million in debt financing from multinational financial services group Credit Suisse. La Casa Ventures also runs BureauOne, which caters to fast-growing companies, mid-market firms and enterprises. The company says that the two brands provide a full-service rental solution and focus on eliminating the hassles involved in furnishing spaces.

M&A

Gurugram-based SyncMedia has acquired Adorithm, a media-tech startup, for $1 million. As part of the acquisition, SyncMedia would absorb the team, product, and intellectual property (IP)/intellectual rights (IR) of the startup.


Started by former Nimbuzz executives Vikas Saxena and Anubhav Sharma in 2017, SyncMedia is a full-stack tech platform that enables marketers and media owners to plan, execute, and measure brand’s marketing investment against the metrics and core business KPIs.


Unacademy has acquired CodeChef, an online platform for algorithm and coding. Codechef was started in 2009 by Bhavin Turakhia, Founder and CEO of Flock, Radix and Zeta, as a part of Directi. It was developed as a platform to help programmers enhance their skills and create a community.

(Edited by Javed Gaihlot)

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