After first two dull weeks in the New Year, funding scenario gathered at least some decent pace this week to infuse much needed hope. Hopefully, this cautious faith will revitalize the Indian startup industry as it looks towards 2020 with a great sense of optimism amid economic slowdown. After few big ticket funding rounds, this week also became momentous as it marked the first major consolidation in India’s foodtech sector; after Zomato acquired UberEats India business in an all stock deal. On this momentous note, let us take a look at some of the top funding activities in our weekly startup funding section.
Bounce: This week bike rental startup Bounce found itself in a fast lane after it raised massive $ 105 Mn in the latest fund raising exercise, which was apparently part of the ongoing series D round. The round also helped Bounce to cap up this week’s biggest funding round. Accel partners and B Capital spearheaded the round while several high profile existing investors also took part. The Bengaluru based bike rental startup, which competes with Vogo, will primarily use the funds to substantially increase the number of electric bikes in its fleet.
Digit Insurance: Insurance sector made a pretty impressive comeback this week, after Digit Insurance raised a massive $80 Mn from Faering Capital, TVS Capital and A91 Partner. This is probably one of the biggest funding rounds raised by an insurance startup in recent times. The latest capital infusion also propelled Digit Insurance’s market valuation to $800 Mn, bringing the company teasingly close to the prestigious unicorn club. The company competes with well-funded startups like Acko and CoverFox.
Zoomcar: After raising $30 Mn this week, Zoomcar got a major refuel for pursuing its future expansion plans. Sony Innovation Fund (VC arm of the electronic giant Sony) spearheaded the funding while few existing investors also infused funds in the round. Following the latest round, Zoomcar will look to expand its domestic footprints and enhance its technological capabilities in data science and IOT. Zoomcar, which is backed by Mahindra & Mahindra and Ford, competes with well-funded companies like Drivezy and Revv.
LogiNext: Freemont (California) and Mumbai based LogiNext received massive fund infusion of $39 Mn from Tiger Global and Steadview Capital. LogiNext basically provides SaaS solution to companies for addressing pain-points in their logistics operations. The company claims to have formidable presence across 20 international markets and touts to be profitable on EBITDA basis since last quarter. LogiNext was co-founded by Dhruvil Singhvi and Manisha Raisinghani. The company counts Paytm and Alibaba amongst its many high profile investors.
Park+: In an enormously populated country like India, finding a parking space is a major hassle. Trying to address this great inconvenience is Delhi NRC based Park+, which raised $ 11 Mn this week. The funding was led by Marquee VCs, Sequoia Capital and Matrix Partners. The round also participation of several high profile startup co-founders including BookMyShow founder & CEO Ashish Hemrajani, Cred founder Kunal Shah and Snapdeal co-founders Rohit and Kunal Bansal. To attract so many high-profile startup co-founders is no small achievement, especially considering that Park+ was founded only last year. The company’s app is reportedly still in Beta phase and is scheduled for full-fledged launch in coming months.
Kristal.AI: Artificial Intelligence empowered wealth management platform Kristal.ai raised $6 Mn from Chiratae Ventures and other investors. Co-founded by Indian entrepreneurs, Kristal.AI has successfully offering digital wealth management services in Hong Kong since 2016 and is now focused on expanding across other Asian markets. This is a series A funding round for the company, which aims to use the funds for ramping up its technology backend and expanding footprint beyond Hong Kong.
Samya.AI: Samya.AI, another AI based startup, raised $6 Mn in a seed funding round from Sequoia Capital India and clutch of independent investors. The company, which is headquartered in Chicago and has office in Bengaluru, said that it will use the funds to scale up its team and secure new business contract across the global markets. The startup essentially provides SaaS solution to aid consumer packaged goods companies to increase their profitability.
mPokket: It is almost ritualistic for Fintech startups to find place in our weekly funding section and this week the place has been taken by mPokket. mPokket raised undisclosed amount of funding from investors. The company offers micro and small size loans to college students.
Konfinity: Nodia based edtech startup Konfinity raised undisclosed amount of funding from US based VC firm AngeList. Konfinity offers online coding courses to students and working professionals.
Instoried: Vernacular content startup, Instoried, raised undisclosed amount of seed funding from SOSV and its Chinese accelerator arm Chinaccelerator. Founded in 2018, Instoried leverages cutting edge technologies like NLP and deep learning algorithm to correctly estimate emotional engagement of the content.