[Funding alert] Anar raises $6.2M in seed round co-led by Elevation Capital and Accel India

B2B networking app Anar plans to use the funding to build the product and for hiring across functions.
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B2B business networking platform Anar  has raised $6.2 million in seed funding co-led by Elevation Capital and Accel India. The round also saw participation from First Cheque and Utsav Somani (iSeed and Partner, AngelList India), along with some of the best engineering and product-centric founders, including Ranjeet Pratap Singh (Co-founder and CEO, Pratilipi), Farid Ahsan (Co-founder, ShareChat), Vidit Aatrey, and Sanjeev Barnwal (Co-founders, Meesho), and Shashvat Nakrani (Co-founder, BharatPe).

The startup said it will use the funding to strengthen its product and tech capabilities.

The Anar Team

Nishank Jain, Co-founder and CEO, Anar, said in a press note, "For all these years, SMB owners are used to getting business through their relationships and networks. With Anar, we want to enable owners to focus on something they are good at, i.e., building their network to grow their business. Anar is a 0-to-1 solution in this space with no other global peers, and we are humbled by our investors' belief in our team and our vision. These funds will help us deliver a world-class product for SMBs."

The company said, Anar focusses on onboarding businesses across multiple verticals, especially jewellery, clothing, grocery stores, footwear, leather products, and similar verticals.

Founded in February 2020 by IIM Lucknow alumni Nishank Jain and Sanjay Bhat, the Anar business app caters primarily to small-and-medium businesses (SMBs) across the value chain, from manufacturers to retailers and resellers, helping them connect and interact with one another.

Speaking about the product plans, Sanjay Bhat, Co-founder and CTO, Anar, said, "We are looking for smart people who are excited about making an impact on hundreds of millions of lives. We want to hire the best engineers and product leaders who will embrace our user-first product mindset as we solve the most pressing problems for SMBs."

"We are in the early stages and have a strong product roadmap and need candidates who can think on first principles to deliver against our strategy. Our long-term objective is to make the best engineering and product team in the world," he added.

On the Anar business app, retailers, resellers, wholesalers, distributors, and manufacturers can create their own profiles, upload their catalogues, create posts, form connections, post requirements and interact with one another.

Commenting on the funding, Prayank Swaroop, Partner, Accel India, added, “Anar is building the new business social network for SMEs in India. A more collaborative way of doing business, and something that hasn't existed in India before. We are very happy to partner with Anar's enterprising team!”

The founders said they envision to build Anar as the go-to-B2B network platform for SMBs across India. the startup aims to enable over 70 million businesses to get access to a vast network, create their digital identity, and find a place to stay updated with industry trends. The team added the platform has gained over two lakh registered businesses on the platform.

Amit Aggarwal, Vice President, Elevation Capital, added, “We’ve long believed in the power of networking to empower and turbo-charge businesses, but observed a gap in the MSME domain, which is constrained by legacy relationships. Anar is taking a unique discovery-first approach to B2B relations (and commerce) and making it truly seamless for small businesses to create their digital presence and forge connections. We are really excited to partner with Nishank and Sanjay in this journey to create a category defining business.”

Edited by Megha Reddy

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