[Weekly funding roundup] Investments remain muted at $36 million
The impact of coronavirus is all too visible on the Indian startup ecosystem as the overall funding momentum continues to remain subdued with investors focused on early-stage deals.
The glimmer of hope which the Indian startup ecosystem saw in terms of funding, with a slight uptick in the numbers during the last week of June, did not sustain into the first week of July.
In the first week of July, the total funding into Indian startups stood at $36 million, which was decline of 45 percent as compared to the previous week.
The spread of coronavirus pandemic has brought a sense gloom as the funding into startups has not touched the three-figure mark in the past six weeks.
The last time the Indian startup ecosystem crossed the $100 million mark was on May 22, and since then, it has remained below this figure.
In the first week of July, as has been the trend for some time now, early-stage funding dominated the total deals. Out of the 10 deals during the week, eight belonged to the early-stage category, while the rest was into growth-stage startups.
The pre-dominant number of deals was in the pre-series A stage at five, and rest sprinkled into other stages.
Debt financing made a comeback this week with a single deal of $3.3 million.
Zetwerk Manufacturing Businesses, the Bengaluru-based startup which operates a B2B manufacturing services marketplace, has raised $21 million (Rs 157.17 crore approx) in a Series C funding round.
The round was led by San Francisco-based Greenoaks Capital. The other participants include existing backers Accel, Kae Capital, Lightspeed, and Sequoia Capital India. This fundraising exercise takes the total capital raised by Zetwerk so far to $62 million.
Flinto Learning Solutions, a Chennai-based edtech startup, has raised $7.2 million in pre-Series B funding, led by Lightbox Ventures. The funding will be utilised by Flinto to support its rapid growth in the early learning space, and to expand its newly-launched pre-school solution Flintoclass@HOME. Through the platform, the startup claims to deliver structured early learning to the doorstep, and focuses on making a child school-ready from the safety and comfort of home during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Paper Boat, the branded snack-maker, has raised around Rs 28 crore from Sofina Ventures, A91 Emerging Fund 1, SCI Growth Investment II, and Catamaran Ventures. Founded in 2010 by ex-Coca Cola India executives Neeraj Kakkar and Neeraj Biyani, Hector Beverages initially came up with an energy drink called Tzinga. But gradually, it pivoted to selling fruit-based drinks under the Paper Boat brand.
Ken42 EdTech Pvt Ltd, an edtech startup focused on institution management, has raised Rs 11 crore ($1.4 million). The Bengaluru-based startup has raised this capital from investors including sector-agnostic Turbostart, Muralidhara C, Managing Partner at law firm Murali & Co Advocates; and Mohan Raju Manthena, Director at construction firm SRK Infrastructure.
Big Bang Boom Solutions, a Chennai-based defence tech startup, has raised $1 million through Mumbai Angels Network in their overall $1.5 million Series A funding round-size. Founded in 2018 by Praveen Dwarkanath and Dr Shivaraman Ramaswamy, Big Bang Boom Solutions (BBBS) is developing integrated intellectual properties for defence purposes. Some of the innovative defense solutions being built by BBBS are T-Series Unmanned Tank Development, Next Generation Hybrid Personal Combat Armour, 360 Advance Battle Interface, and Anti-drone Defense System, among others.
ChitMonks, the Hyderabad-based blockchain startup with focus on the financial services industry, has raised $650,000 in pre-Series A funding round from Unicorn India Ventures. The funds raised by ChitMonks will be used for product development, market expansion, strategic hiring, and further investment in scaling up the current business. Unicorn India Ventures is an early-stage VC firm and this latest announcement is the second investment from its Rs 400 crore Fund II.
Early-stage micro venture capital firm Artha Venture Fund has invested Rs 3.5 crore ($465,300) in a mobility platform for kids, Piggy Ride. The investment is part of Piggy Ride's pre-Series A funding round. The funding was led by existing investor JAFCO Investment Asia Pacific, a Tokyo-based venture capital firm.
Indian short-form video app Mitron has received seed funding of Rs 2 crore from 3One4 Capital and LetsVenture. Mitron was launched two months ago as a short video-making app developed by Shivank Agarwal and Anish Khandelwal. Within two months of its launch, the app crossed 100 million downloads, and has a rating of 4.4 out of 5 on Google Play Store.
Inflection Point Ventures has invested an undisclosed amount of funding in snacking startup Samosa Party, which the company will utilise to scale, and open cloud kitchens across Bengaluru and other Tier-I cities. Samosa Party will also use the funds to improve its production technology.
Bold Care, a Mumbai-based men’s health and wellness startup, has raised an undisclosed pre-seed round of funding from an array of strategic investors. These include Rajesh Ranavat, Executive Director at Fung Strategic Investments; Abhishek Shah, Founder of ConsumerX; Kabir Kochhar, former Founding Partner at The Glitch; and Mohit Satyanand.
Fivetran, a Bengaluru-based company working in automated data integration with headquarters in Silicon Valley, has raised $100 million in Series C funding, led by Andreessen Horowitz (a16z) and General Catalyst, with participation from existing investors CEAS Investments and Matrix Partners.
(Edited by Kanishk Singh)
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