[Funding Roundup] Strawcture Eco, WYLD, EYWAMEDIA, others raise early-stage capital

Here are the startups that announced early-stage rounds of funding on March 1, 2022.
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ENGG Online raises $3.5 million in pre-series A

Mumbai-based EnggOnline raised $3.5 million in a pre-Series A round led by HNIs, professionals, and founders.

The investors include Kirti Doshi (Founder member, Antique Group), Sanjay Dangi (Authum Investments), Anurag Jain (Family office of Tarun Jain), Kishore Shah (CEO, Aamara Capital), P S Jayakumar (ex-MD and CEO, Bank of Baroda), Prem Rajani (Managing Partner, Rajani Associates), Akshay Gupta and N Jayakumar (Management Team, Prime Securities).

ENGG Online, an incubate of Society for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (SINE) and IIT-Bombay, is a SaaS-based platform for tutors/trainers with a unique pedagogy of experiential learning using Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR).

The startup will use the funds towards manpower, cost of content development, delivery, and infrastructure required for the expansion of operations.

“This funding will be used to complete our development of top skills (welding, auto-mechanic, electrician, fitter, mason, etc.), for first-year engineering courses at degree and diploma colleges and to develop safety modules for industry,” said Naishadh Paleja, Founder and CEO, ENGG Online.

RupeeRedee Captive NBFC FincFriends raises $1.1M in Series B

RupeeRedee Captive NBFC FincFriends raised $1.1 million in a Series B round from existing stakeholders Digital Finance International (DFI), a member of Russia-headquartered Finstar Financial Group.

The startup aims to leverage the capital to expand its customer base, improve offerings, and increase the depth of its digital NBFC portfolio.

Incepted in 2018, FincFriends is a 100 percent digital NBFC registered with RBI. The startup had previously raised $6 million in 2019 from Digital Finance International, its parent company.

It will use the capital in diversifying the NBFC’s portfolio in lending and serving more customers.

Strawcture Eco raises $375,000 in seed round

Strawcture Eco raised $375,000 in a seed round from Social Alpha, Villgro Innovations Foundations, and Brigade REAP. The round also saw participation from Rahul Talwar (Director, DLF Family Office) and HNIs. 

The startup adds value to waste by developing high engineered bio-panels out of agricultural residues

Strawcture Eco prevents stubble burning by creating an alternative application for agricultural waste, providing better incentives to farmers. Further, the construction sector’s enormous carbon footprint, coupled with high-water requirements during the lifecycle of construction, makes the company’s bio-panels the ideal impact-driven alternative.  

Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, the startup claims its revenue to have grown 100 percent in the last two years. It services clients in over 11 states, including ICICI Infrastructures, Heritage Experiential International School, Jayadeva Hospital, and SELCO Foundation for numerous healthcare projects. 

“We are a building material company focused on using alternative fibres to wood and other carbon-intensive raw materials to make value-added products. Our partnership with Social Alpha, Villgro Innovations Foundation, and Brigade REAP is aligned to our vision of building a circular economy-based decentralised manufacturing model that uses 100 percent natural fibres to make our products and boosts livelihoods of local farmers,” said Shriti Pandey, CEO of Strawcture Eco.

WYLD raises $350,000 in pre-seed round from Better Capital

Social currency card company Wyld raised $350,000 in a pre-seed round led by Better Capital

The round also saw participation from Aman Gupta and Sameer Mehta (boAt), Aditi Shrivastava (Pocket Aces), Malini Agarwal (MissMalini), Nikunj Lotia (BeYouNick), Pranay Swarup and Julie Kriegshaber (Chtrbox), Rohit Raj (The Glitch), Ankit Kedia (Capital-A), Singularity Ventures, Ganesh Krishnan (Plan B Innovations), and Shrishti Sahu and Karthik Bhatt (Force Ventures), among others. 

Founded in 2021, WYLD is a phygital payment card and mobile app exclusively designed for active social media users (those with over 1,000 followers on Instagram) to help them monetise their social influence.

Built on the premise that everybody with a digital presence, no matter how big or small, is influential, WYLD helps them leverage and monetise that influence with every purchase.

WYLD will use the funds for tech advancements, developing the WYLD payment card, and building a robust go-to-market strategy.

“We envision a world where someone with as little as 1,000 followers can get paid for giving a shout-out on social media about their latest purchase or experience and become ambassadors for their favourite brands, creating user-generated content at scale. The possibilities are vast, and needless to say, we’re very excited to have some of the best VCs and tech founders in the country who share our vision and have backed us,” said co-founder Dishant Sanghvi. 

Bebe Burp raises $280,000 in seed round

Surat-based baby food provider Bebe Burp has raised $280,000 in a seed round led by Lead Angels and Lets Venture.

Other investors, including Mapro Foods, Ivy Growth Associates, Shreeji Brothers, Dholakia Ventures, Jaydeep Deshpande, Navika Ventures, Mandar Pramod Dixit, Vikas Gupta, Preetam Goswami, Raghupati Rao, and Sumit Malhotra, also participated in the round.

Bebe Burp plans to use the funds to pursue strategic opportunities and develop new commercial relationships. The startup also wants to invest in developing new marketing strategies and expanding its existing product line.

Besides business development, it plans to hire new talent to expand its in-house team to help achieve the long-term goals of the startup.

Founded in 2018 by Shruti Tibrewal, Bharat Tibrewal, and Chirag Gupta, Bebe Burp claims it is “the best team to solve dietary needs of your little ones.” Bebe Burp has a growing customer base of over 60,000.

“It has always been our goal to provide healthy alternatives of baby food to mothers. We are excited about the recent round of investments that has demonstrated the investment community's confidence in Bebe Burp," said Shruti.

HairVeda raises undisclosed amount in pre-seed funding

Ayurveda haircare brand HairVeda has raised an undisclosed amount in pre-seed funding from angel investor Prashant Kaushik.

“Our team and stakeholders are looking forward to growing further and collaborating with strategic investors to make HairVeda globally available in the US, Canada, Mexico, and many more countries. We also plan to launch our skincare portfolio in 2022,” said Varun Vashisthaa, Founder, HairVeda.

Founded in 2020 and certified by the Ministry of Ayush, the startup offers natural and organic hair care products. The Delhi-based startup will utilise these funds to expand its online reach through marketing and promotion and eventually grow its product portfolio.

EYWAMEDIA raises investment from Globe Teleservices

CX-focused SaaS company EYWAMEDIA raised an undisclosed investment from Globe Teleservices, a telecom solution company focused on international voice, messaging, and managed services.

EYWAMEDIA is an independent leader in the O2O Customer Experience (CX) Cloud that enables enterprises to engage their most potential and loyal customers, matching their products with their customer's preferences based on offline-online data points.

With this new investment, GTS will foray into the coveted telco sector, with new product offerings like CPaaS and CVM into the worldwide markets, the company said.

"We, at EYWAMEDIA, during our 6+ years of evolution, have been able to crack the code of understanding consumer journeys across offline and online touchpoints, personalise communications throughout multiple channels and build meaningful continuing conversations between ventures and their customers," said Anshuman Chaudhary, Co-founder and CBO, EYWAMEDIA.

Other investors, including ah! Ventures Angel Network, Wintech Ventures, and Kyron Accelerator, also participated in the round.

Edited by Suman Singh

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