Startup news and updates: daily roundup (July 15, 2021)

YourStory presents this daily roundup of the latest startup news and updates from the Indian startup ecosystem and beyond. Here's the roundup for Thursday, July 15, 2021.
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Young investors drove demand for Zomato IPO on Paytm Money on day one

Paytm Money study on the much-awaited Zomato IPO outlined some interesting shifts in investing trends, such as a lot more youngsters applied to buy the food delivery giant's shares versus older retail investors.

A whopping 27 percent of those who applied for Zomato's IPO on Paytm Money on day one were under the age of 25, the study showed, while 60 percent were under 30 years of age.

Reliance in talks to acquire JustDial to strengthen local commerce operations

Reliance Industries is in advanced talks to acquire local business listings platform JustDial. The deal could be pegged at $800-900 million (or Rs 6,600 crore).

JustDial is currently valued at approximately Rs 2,388 crore, and could see its valuation swell 2-3X at the time of the deal. It is likely to make a formal announcement after its board meeting in Mumbai on July 16.

WhatsApp launches its multi-device capability in beta, upto four devices can be connected simultaneously

Instant messaging platform WhatsApp has launched limited public beta test for its multi-device capability. According to an official statement, this feature will allow people to use WhatsApp on phone and up to four other devices simultaneously.

According to the Facebook-owned messaging platform, users will be able to connect each companion device independently while maintaining the end-to-end encryption and security.

OneCode raises $5M led by Sequoia’s Surge and Nexus Venture Partners (Funding)

Bengaluru-based OneCode, a platform to digitise the sales ecosystem, on Thursday announced $5 million in funding led by Sequoia Capital India’s Surge and Nexus Venture Partners, with participation from WaterBridge Ventures

The startup’s mission is to digitise 50 million sales agents across India, and bridge the gap between brands and potential buyers who may need in-person interactions and physical touch points before committing to a purchase.

LSV Capital to invest $100M in Indian startups, onboards Satish Rath as partner

Life Science Vision Capital, the UK-based early-stage healthcare and investment firm, recently said it will invest over $100 million in Indian startups over the next 10 years. The firm plans to invest in transactions with a deal size in the range of $1.4 to $ 14 million.

[Funding alert] API startup MedPay raises $ 1.2M from UK-based EF and GrowX Ventures

API platform startup MedPay has raised $1.2 million in seed funding from UK-based Talent Investor Entrepreneur First (EF) and GrowX Ventures. Founded by Arun Bhatia and Ravi Chandra in April 2020, MedPay is a technology startup that links primary healthcare centres to a cashless OPD insurance network. MedPay Connected Care Network (CCN) of clinics, pharmacies and diagnostic centres enable healthcare centres to accept insurance payments in real-time and facilitate a cashless claims process for the insured.

Vedantu to acquire majority stake in subscription-based test prep platform Pedagogy

Edtech soonicorn Vedantu is set to acquire a majority stake in Ahmedabad-based e-learning platform Pedagogy for an undisclosed amount. The deal will strengthen the former's presence in the hyper-competitive test prep segment currently dominated by Unacademy.

D2C nutrition brand Oziva introduces small packs as it expands its retail presence

Niche direct-to-consumer brand Oziva, which sells vegan nutrition powders, is all set to launch small sachet variants of their hero products. The move comes as the brand is increasing its offline presence to tap into a wider customer base. “The sachet versions of our top-selling variants will be available in stores in the next 30 days,” Aarti Gill, Co-founder, Oziva, told YourStory.  

Marico acquires majority stake in Apcos Naturals that owns 'Just Herbs'

Homegrown FMCG firm Marico Ltd on Wednesday said it has acquired 60 percent stake in Apcos Naturals, which owns Ayurvedic beauty brand ‘Just Herbs’. The stake will be acquired over a period of two years through primary infusion and secondary buy-outs, a joint statement said without disclosing the deal size.

Trentar acquires 75 pc stake in Noida-based drone service startup GarudaUAV

Dorf Ketal's group company, Trentar Pvt Ltd, announced the acquisition of 75 percent stake in Noida-based drone service provider GarudaUAV. The financial details of the deal remain undisclosed. According to the official statement, the deal is aimed at scaling up new-age businesses based on drone services and software.

ICICI Foundation to donate 1,800 oxygen concentrators to hospitals in the Himalayan belt, tribal areas

On Thursday, the CSR arm of ICICI Group, ICICI Foundation for Inclusive Growth or ICICI Foundation, announced that it will donate about 1,800 oxygen concentrators to sub-divisional hospitals in the Himalayan belt and remote tribal areas of India in the year 2021-22. Through this donation, the Foundation aims to provide people in these regions with immediate oxygen support in case of a medical emergency.

Amazon India to increase storage capacity by 40pc ahead of Prime Day, festive season

Amazon India is on an expansion drive of its fulfilment network, with a nearly 40 percent increase in its storage capacity as compared to last year, the ecommerce giant said on Thursday. Following this expansion, Amazon will have more than 43 million cubic feet of storage capacity across 15 states, supporting around 8.5 lakh sellers across India.

ISRO holds hot test of liquid propellant Vikas engine for 'Gaganyaan'

The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) on Wednesday successfully conducted the third long-duration hot test of the liquid propellant Vikas engine for the Gaganyaan programme, the country's first manned mission to space. The test was done for the core L110 liquid stage of the human-rated GSLV MkIII vehicle, as part of the engine qualification requirements for the Gaganyaan programme, the space agency said in a statement.

[Funding alert] Inshorts raises $60M from Vy Capital and existing investors

Inshorts the news aggregator app, has raised $60 million in funding from Vy Capital with participation from existing investors. Following this funding round, Inshorts has raised $140 million in the last one year from investors including Addition, Tiger Global, SIG, A91 and Tanglin Venture Partners, a statement said.

BharatePe targets $6B in annualised transactions processed value from POS biz by end of FY22

Fintech giant BharatPe expects to hit $6 billion in annual transactions processed value in its POS business by the end of the financial year 2022, the company said on Thursday. It also aims to grow its point-of-sale system business — BharatSwipe — at least three folds, by expanding into 80 cities across India by FY22 end, the Delhi-based company added.

Ola Electric opens early booking for its Ola Scooter at Rs 499

Ola Electric on Thursday announced it has now opened up reservations for its Ola Scooter. The company said that consumers can reserve their Ola Scooter on olaelectric.com by paying a refundable deposit of Rs 499. Those who reserve now will get priority delivery, it said in a statement.

Healthtech startup Meddo enters Bengaluru; plans to launch in ten more cities in two years

Healthtech startup Meddo has announced its entry into Bengaluru on Thursday, two weeks after raising a pre-Series A round of $6 million led by SRI Capital, Picus Capital, and Alkemi Capital. Saurabh Kochhar, Founder and CEO of Meddo said that Bengaluru being a technology hub, with majority of consumers being tech natives or early adopters, makes the city a conducive market for the startup.

Co-founders of Meddo: Dr Naveen Nishchal and Saurabh Kochhar 

[Funding alert] Spacetech startup Digantara raises $2.5M seed funding from Kalaari Capital

Bengaluru-based spacetech startup Digantara raised $2.5 million as part of their seed funding round from Kalaari Capital. According to the official statement, Digantara will use the proceeds to accelerate its product development and launch its first satellite (technology demonstration mission) to LEO.

Zomato IPO subscribed 4.80 times on second day

The response from the investors for the initial public offering (IPO) of foodtech unicorn Zomato continues to grow as the subscription for the issue reached 4.80 times on the second day, with both qualified institutional buyers and retail categories placing their bets on the company.

[Funding alert] Netradyne raises $150M in Series C investment led by SoftBank Vision Fund

Netradyne the startup that has built AI and edge computing focussed on fleet and driver safety, has raised $150 million in Series C funding led by SoftBank Vision Fund. The round also saw participation from existing investors Point72 Ventures and M12. The funding will be used to advance its core technology, expand into new geographies and accelerate hiring across R&D, marketing, and customer support. The total funding raised by the mobility startup is now at over $197 million.

[Funding alert] Agritech startup Aqgromalin raises seed round led by Zephyr Peacock

Aqgromalin, a tech-driven farm diversification platform enabling farmers to diversify into animal husbandry and aquaculture, has raised Rs 5.5 crore in seed funding led by Zephyr Peacock India Growth fund, a provider of growth capital to startups in India. The round also includes participation from IndigramLabs Foundation, and other noted angels from the agri startup ecosystem.

Edited by Suman Singh

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