Hyperlocal startups continue to raise back-to-back investment as investors see it as the next big segment after e-commerce. Besides Urbanclap $10 million round today, Mumbai-based hyperlocal service startup Zimmber has riased $400,000 (Rs 2.5 crore) from InMobi’s Co-founder Naveen Tewari. The company also acqui-hired Mumbai based on demand laundry service Dhulai.in.
Unlike other startups, Zimmber trains and accredits all handy-men before enrolling them on the platform. In India, this segment has received great VC interest, though there is an intense activity with more than 69 home solutions firms being founded in 2014. Speaking about funding, Anubhab Goel, CEO, Zimmber, said:
We are building a world class product that will revolutionise the startup scene in the daily maintenance of households. Investments from such great businesses such as InMobi endorse our capabilities and help us in adding value as a technology firm.
Zimmber was founded in 2014 by Anubhab Goel, Gaurav Shrivastava and Amit Kumar -- Zimmber provides home services like home painting, AC services, plumbing, carpentry, and home cleaning, among others.
Prior to this round, Praveen Sinha (Co-founder and MD – Jabong) and Satyam Bansal (Director Mobile App Distribution and Strategic Alliances – Flipkart) also invested in the company.
Speaking about the thesis behind the investment, InMobi's CEO Naveen Tewari said,
I always believe in backing up a team that is super passionate and loves to work with each other. India is primarily a service economy and when it comes to day to day home services, we all tend to suffer. Zimmber is solving a real life problem we all face each day. This is high time when a company like Zimmber does the comprehensive and holistic work on uplifting the ecosystem. We believe in the model and team and would continue to back Zimmber in our own ways. This is a huge market opportunity and Zimmber is well poised to solve the problem.
As of now it has partnered with 250 service providers and process close to 3K orders on a monthly basis. With this round, the company has also announced an acquisition of Mumbai-based laundry service Dhulai. Acqui-hiring Dhulai helps in streamlining Zimmber supply side and scale up laundry vertical at Zimmber.
Henal from Dhulai says,
Laundry segment is not an organized space. We started Dhulai keeping the same vision, however with advent of new local home services providers, we see it as a shared vision. I really enjoyed meeting with Amit from Zimmber and thought since the dream and destination is the same, why not merge the paths as well. We will ensure that this category becomes the leading one for Zimmber.
According to Anubhab, Zimmber is in advanced talks to raise Series A soon. “We will close Series A round (less than $2 million) in a month's time,” concludes Anubhab.
The company competes with Urbanclap, Urbanpro, and Localoye among several others in the space. Hyperlocal space is set to grow in India but unlike other sectors (like e-commerce), it’s a manpower-intensive game. And operations will be the key factors for startups who will survive in the longer run. Besides cracking operation, VC money will be a decisive force for winners.