We bring to you the latest edition Funding Galore: Indian Startup Funding of the week.

This week 16 startups raised around $29.4 Mn in funding altogether in the Indian startup ecosystem. (The startup funding calculations are based on the startups that disclosed funding amount.)

One of the biggest Indian startup funding news this week was Reliance Industries Limited (RIL) announcing to invest over $180 Mn into AI-based education platform, Embibe over the next three years. This will put RIL in a position to buy out around 72.69% stake from Embibe’s existing investors including Lightspeed Venture Partners and Kalaari Capital.

Indian Startup Funding Of The Week

Ideal Insurance: Kolkata based comprehensive insurance management startup Ideal Insurance Brokers Pvt. Ltd raised $1 Mn in its seed round of funding from Venture Catalysts. The company plans to use the funding for building a strong infrastructural support for our operations and backend team as well as for marketing purposes.

LetsMD: Delhi-NCR based LetsMD, which offers a  platform to discover healthcare financing options, raised $1 Mn in Pre Series A round of funding led by SRI Capital with participation from existing investors Waterbridge Ventures and Thinkuvate.The startup plans to use the funding to scale up its pan-India operations.

Smartivity: Delhi-based edtech startup Smartivity raised $53.8 K (INR 35 Lakhs) from Education-focused publishing house S Chand & Company Ltd. Earlier, in May 2016, the startup raised $1 Mn in pre-Series A funding led by S Chand and early-stage investment firm AdvantEdge Partners.

Loanzen: Bengaluru-based peer to peer lending marketplace startup, Loanzen, raised an undisclosed amount of pre-Series A funding from venture capital firm Kae Capital Management. The startup will use the funding to expand its team in Bengaluru and grow its loan book.

LoadShare: Bengaluru-headquartered logistics startup LoadShare raised an undisclosed amount in a Series A round of funding led by Stellaris Venture Partners and existing investor Matrix Partners. The startup will use the funding to strengthen its core leadership team, expand to new regions and invest in its logistics technology platform.

Aye Finance: Gurugram-headquartered online lending startup Aye Finance raised $4.6 Mn (INR 30 Cr) in debt funding led by Swiss impact investor BlueOrchard Finance Ltd. This funding will enable Aye Finance to further diversify its lending portfolio, with the aim of reaching out to more MSMEs in India.

PoolToo: Hyderabad-based city bike and car-pooling startup Pooltoo raised an undisclosed amount of funding from Devika Ganesh, a High network individual (HNI). The startup plans to use the funding to strengthen its tech infrastructure and build its operations and marketing.

Kristal.ai: Kristal.AI, an AI-powered digital asset management platform raised $1.87 Mn in a Seed funding round led by IDG Ventures India. Angel investors including Shailesh Rao (Senior Advisor -TPG, McKinsey) and Amit Gupta (Founding Partner, Newquest Capital) also participated in this funding round. Kristal.AI plans to utilise the raised funding to bolster its technology stack as well as expedite the integration of machine learning capabilities for providing faster and more efficient financial advisory to its clients. It is also looking at expanding its reach beyond the three countries, especially into South-East Asia, Middle-East and the US.

TravelTriangle: Gurugram-headquartered travel marketplace TravelTriangle raised $12 Mn (INR 78 Cr) in a Series C round of funding led by growth-capital fund Fundamentum. Existing investors – SAIF Partners, Bessemer Venture Partners, RB investments – and a clutch of angel investors also participated in the round. The startup plans to use the funding to invest in building technology, in order to further strengthen the customer interaction layer using artificial intelligence and machine learning, while the data analytics will help build a recommendation engine. The company is also looking to expand to newer destinations and invest in brand building.

YumLane: Mumbai-based FMCG startup QwikPik Technology, which owns and operates YumLane, raised $4 Mn in a Series A round of funding led by Singapore-based family office RB Investments. The startup plans to use the funds to develop products, increase retail footprint, hire sales and marketing executives, and manage its backend operations.

Elemential: Mumbai-based blockchain startup Elemential raised an undisclosed amount of seed funding led by Matrix Partners India. The funding round also saw the participation of Amrish Rau, Investopad, Digital Currency Group, Hinduja Group, Lightspeed India, Eight Innovate, Amit Ranjan, Prashant Malik and other prominent angel investors. The startup plans to use the funding for team expansion to cater to its global demand.

Pipa+Bella: Mumbai-based fashion accessories etailer Pipa Bella Accessories Pvt Ltd, which runs the brand ‘Pipa+Bella’, raised $1 Mn in a funding round led by Fireside Ventures. Existing investors also participated in this round. The startup plans to use the funding to build the brand through innovative and sustained marketing efforts, scale operations through new distribution channels and make key management hires.

Kaleidofin: Chennai-based fintech startup Kaleidofin raised over $2.8 Mn in seed funding from Omidyar Network. Blume Ventures and individual investors also participated in the round. The startup plans to use the funding to accelerate its customer acquisition pan-India, expand the company’s network of strategic partners, and enable deep investments in technology and analytics.

Chariot: New Delhi-based Internet of Things (IoT) startup Chariot raised $306K (INR 2 Cr) in a Pre-Series A round of funding from Gems Partners, a micro venture capital fund. The startup plans to use the funding to expand its customer base and develop its products.

Fullonwedding: Bengaluru-based wedding tech startup Fullonwedding raised an undisclosed amount in Pre-Series A round of funding from a group of marquee investors. The startup plans to use this funding to expand geographically, grow the business verticals and strengthen its partner network.

Mojro: Bengaluru-based urban logistics startup Mojro raised $650K funding led by 1Crowd and its investor community. The startup plans to use the funding for technology development, team expansion for marketing and building partnerships with fleet owners.

Indian Startup Acquisitions Of The Week

  • Soon after Ola announced the acquisition of Ridlr, the cab aggregator is said to be in talks to acquire foodtech startup FreshMenu and another similar startup. Even though no deal has been been finalised yet, a separate food entity under Ola might be a possibility.
  • Texas-based business software company Idera Inc has acquired Bengaluru-based Webyog, a Bengaluru-based bootstrapped database management tool provider for an undisclosed amount in an all-cash deal. With this acquisition, Idera will be able to expand its portfolio of database tools business solutions to open source databases like MySQL.
  • Xiaomi announced its plans to pick up a stake in Indian fintech startup ZestMoney. ZestMoney is also in talks to raise $20 Mn funding with participation from its existing investors including PayU. In this light, the companies have been talking about an investment which will enable closer integration between them to push sales on Mi.com.
  • Delhi-based home rental services marketplace ZiffyHomes acquired home rental platform Nivaasa in an all-cash deal for an undisclosed amount. With this acquisition, ZiffyHomes plans to target millennials spread across the major metro cities in India.
  • ClearTax acquired Greeblu Enterprises, which runs an infotainment app TOOTL. With this acquisition, ClearTax plans to use this technology and curate personalised tax, finance and compliance related content on its website.
  • Delhi-NCR based Honey Money Top Retails Private Limited, a supermarket chain, acquired iOrder Fresh, the mobile and web application for fresh food delivery from Supply Chain Analytics and Technologies Pvt. Ltd. for an undisclosed amount. The acquisition will help Honey Money Top build a strong online presence to emerge as a differentiated omni channel retailer catering to customers in Delhi NCR.

Other Developments Of The Week

  • SR Innovation Exchange declared the winners of Innovation X 1.0, the first in their series to find the best innovations from across India. The winners were Crop IQ, Flowrhex, and Macfarm.
  • T-Hub and Facebook announced the first batch of winning startups, selected for their joint program “India Innovation Hub.”  A cohort of nine startups focused on VR have been selected and each startup will get access to training, mentors, workshops, research, and Facebook’s VR Innovation lab located at T-Hub as a part of the three-month accelerator program. The nine chosen startups include Dimension NXG, GMETRI Studios, Highir Technologies, Innov4Sight Health and Biomedical Systems, Loop Reality, Merxius Software, Parallel XR, Scapic Innovations and VadR.
  • South Korea-based financial services company Mirae Global Asset Management announced its plans to set up a $1 Bn VC fund in Asia, with India as one of its core investment market. India will get one of the largest allocations from the fund. Also, it will focus on sectors such as consumer internet, financial technology and consumer brands amongst others.
  • Bengaluru-based Venture Capital firm, Saama Capital closed its fourth fund with a corpus of $100 Mn. The first sale for the fund took place on March 28, 2018. 59 LPs invested in the company’s fourth fund. With its fourth fund, the company is expected to continue to focus on consumer brands, software and fintech segment, while writing larger cheques to its bets on early-stage investments. This will also allow the company to invest in the winning products of its portfolio.

Stay tuned for the next edition of Funding Galore: Indian Startup Funding Of The Week!

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