[Funding alert] Venture Catalysts leads $1.8M pre-Series A round in Optimized Electrotech
Mumbai-based integrated incubator Venture Catalysts has led a $1.8 million funding round in defence technology startup(OEPL). The funding round also saw participation from OEPL’s existing investor GVFL and other angel investors.
Founded in 2017 by Sandeep Shah, Anil Yekkala, Dharin Shah, Kuldeep Saxena, and Purvi Shah, this Ahmedabad-based defence-tech startup produces indigenously designed, developed, and manufactured surveillance systems for security forces, national assets, as well as defence and aerospace companies. With over 32 patents, OEPL has served Indian Railways and the Indian Army for perimeter surveillance.
Talking about the first-ever investment in the defence sector, Dr Apoorva Ranjan Sharma, Founder and Managing Director of Venture Catalysts, said,
"Our investment vision aligns with that of Prime Minister Narendra Modi's idea to make India self-reliant or Atmanirbhar in the defence sector. We expect more startups to use technology to strengthen the country's safety and security amidst growing threats and skirmishes on the borders. Optimized Electrotech has an immense potential to emerge as a major player in the segment."
"By 2030, Optimized Electrotech shall be amongst the global leaders in all imaging surveillance applications under its platforms across land, sea, air, and space. Our vision is to be the global leader in surveillance systems, in the process making India self-reliant in its defence needs. At present, India imports 55 percent of its defence needs, but soon it will be a market dominated by indigenous products due to a favorable government policy,” added Optimized Electrotech's Co-founder and CMD, Sandeep Shah.
Shah further added that the funds would be utilised to design new-age surveillance systems, product innovations, and build more prototypes to be used in the Railways sector, and smart city and intelligent border projects with a market potential of $7.3 billion.
He also said that the Indian government had allocated a total of Rs 1.35 lakh crore in the Defence Budget-2021 towards capital expenditure, including purchasing new weapons, aircraft, warships, and other military hardware showing an increase in demand for defence equipment and a market opportunity for the OEPL.
The company claims that it already has a robust sales funnel worth Rs 95 crore from Indian and Foreign OEMs for the next few years.