[Weekly funding roundup] Christmas comes early – Investors play Santa with over $640 M for Indian startups
If OYO was the bellwether in last week's funding, Byju’s claimed the pivot position in this weekly fund raising.
Funding raised by the Indian startup ecosystem crossed the half-a-billion-dollar mark this week, anchored by Byju’s $400 million private equity funding. From Monday until today, total funding in the ecosystem went past the $641 million mark across 31 deals. The week saw 22 early-stage deals raising $60 million, nearly the same amount as in the previous week, and two late-stage deals garner $35 million. Late stage deals raised around a third of what they raised in last week.
The deal of the week: Byju’s
Edtech startup Byju’s, run by Think and Learn Pvt Ltd, raised $400 million in a new round of funding, taking its valuation to almost $4 billion and making it among the five most valuable startups in India. The company’s plans to now ramp up operations in the domestic market, and expand its presence overseas.
A quick look at key early-stage deals this week
- B2B agri-marketing platform Ninjacart raises Series B
Bengaluru-based B2B agritech startup Ninjacart on Wednesday raised Rs 250 crore in a round led by Accel US, Syngenta Ventures, Jo Hirao, Founder of ZIGExN, Neoplux, HR Capital and Trifecta Capital. Existing investors Accel India, Nandan Nilekani, Mistletoe and Qualcomm Ventures also participated in the round.
- Auto finance firm WheelsEMI raises Series B
Pune-based pre-owned two-wheeler financing company WheelsEMI raised $14 million from Faering Capital, founded by Aditya Parekh and Sameer Shroff. The company will use the funds to expand its network across multiple cities.
- Noida-based Pimcore raises Series A
Open source software platform startup Pimcore raised $3.5 million in its first round to expand operations in India. The round was led by German Auctus Capital Partners AG.
- Sagisu raises Pre-Series A
Intra-city logistics solution provider Sagisu secured seed funding of $2.1 million from undisclosed investors. Sagisu will use the investment to build smart hubs, expand its footprint and scale up technology platform.
- Three startups raise $1 million each in their pre-series A
Mumbai-based car marketplace for multi-brand cars MYNEWCAR, Noida based cloud-based testing platform LambdaTest and London-based OweMe that helps companies move money efficiently through their supply chain raised $1 million in pre-Series A funding.
Late stage deals
1 – Bengaluru-based Licious raises Series D
Delightful Gourmet Private Ltd, which runs gourmet meat startup Licious, raised $25 million in a Series D round led by Japan’s Nichirei Corp. Existing investors 3one4 Capital, Bertelsmann India Investments and Vertex Ventures Southeast Asia and India also participated in the round.
2 – Gurugram-based Roposo raises Series C round
Social fashion ecommerce discovery platform Roposo raised $10 million in its Series C round from Tiger Global and Bertelsmann, taking its total fund raising to nearly $31 million. The company is planning to use the funds for expansion, product development and user acquisition.
- Electric scooter maker Hero Electric raised $22.3 million from Mumbai-based Alpha Capital to build its second factory, develop new products and expand its dealer network on hope local demand will double over the next few years.
- Bengaluru-based mattress and sleep-related products company WakeFit raised $9 million in a round led by Sequoia Capital. Post funding, Sequoia will hold 31.9 percent stake in the company and Wakefit's valuation will rise to Rs 210 crore. The company said the funds will be used to strengthen its manufacturing capabilities.
- Gurugram-based startup Housejoy raised around $3.24 million in a bridge round led by Matrix. Vertex Ventures, RTP Ventures, Qualcomm Ventures and Sama Capital also participated in the round.
- Mumbai-based Wow Venue raised $1.5 million from strategic investor Pranav Pathak, giving the company a much-needed boost to focus on its long-term growth plans.
- US-based MPOWER Financing completed its largest round of $110 million on Thursday. The funding round was led by Gray Matters Capital and Community Investment Management (CIM). MPOWER Financing has a strong presence in India and provides educational loans to meritorious students to study overseas.
Exits and acquisitions
Online search giant Google acquired Sigmoid Labs, the parent company of the popular train tracking app Where Is My Train. Media reports pegged the deal size at $30 million-$40 million. Walmart Labs this week announced the acqui-hire of the key team of Int.ai, an AI startup founded in 2016.