Startup news and funding updates: daily roundup (July 11, 2022)

YourStory presents the daily news roundup from the Indian startup ecosystem and beyond. Here's the roundup for Monday, July 11, 2022.
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My Cloud Kitchen, NVA Foods set up incubation for cloud kitchen startups in Bengaluru

My Cloud Kitchen and NVA Foods are setting up an incubation and consultation service for cloud kitchen startups in Bengaluru, the two companies said on Monday.

The corpus of the joint venture will be $1.25 million, which it will invest in incubating and consulting at least 18 brands in 2022 that are multi-branded and multi-cuisine and focus on only home delivery, the companies said.

Karnataka govt, Giggr ink deal for Web 3 platform to provide services

The Karnataka government and Giggr have signed a deal to develop a Web 3-based platform to provide citizens 24X7 services via government agencies. The platform will be made available in nine months, a press release said.

The platform will serve urban and rural Karnataka via cognitive computing, natural language processing, neural networks, and computer vision, among other things.

“This digital platform, which is quite different from IT, will be available to provide citizen services through all government agencies 24x7x365 when it will be completed in nine months duration from now," Ashwathnarayan CN, Minister for Skill Development, Entrepreneurship & Livelihood; IT & BT, Science & Technology; Higher Education, with the Government of Karnataka, said during the signing of the memorandum of understanding.

Men's fashion brand DaMENSCH launches offline stores

DaMENSCH on Monday said it plans to launch retail stores this year and enter 10,000 sales avenues by 2024.

Founded in 2018 by Gaurav Pushkar and Anurag Saboo, DaMENSCH is a D2C men's essential wear company that recently raised $16.4 million in funding.

"The first half of 2022 has been very strong for us in terms of consumer and investor interests. Offline retail space is a promising ecosystem for us to continue the growth momentum in the coming days," said Gaurav in a press note.

Aerem raises $2.5 million in pre-Series A funding

Solar financing platform Aerem said it has raised $2.5 million in a pre-Series A funding round led by Blume Ventures.

The startup will use the funds to grow its loan book, build out its tech platform, and hire across portfolios such as tech, product, finance, and operations.

Founded in 2021 by Anand Jain, Aerem provides financing for rooftop solar projects for MSMEs, helping them reduce costs and become profitable sooner.

"Their full-stack solution provides end-to-end engagement and is ahead of the market by one to two years. Solar is in a sweet spot where macro (top-down) and micro (bottom-up) factors are incredibly aligned," said Ashish Fafadia, Partner at Blume Ventures.

HDFC Life invests in VC firm Z3Partners Tech Fund

Life insurance company HDFC Life said it has invested in tech and digital investments-focussed venture capital company called Z3Partners Tech Fund, which is currently putting together a new Rs 500 crore fund.

Z3Partners has backed startups such as Shipsy, Gramophone, DealShare, and Cyfirma, to name a few.

It was founded by Gautam Patel who has also invested in BigBasket, Pepperfry, OfBusiness, etc.

Z3Partners closed its second round of Rs 250 crores last year and says it is on track for the final close this year. Its average ticket size is around Rs 35-80 crore, which it invests in early growth stage tech startups.

Skilling platform Disprz appoints Sabari Viswanathan as CTO

AI-powered digital skilling platform Disprz said it has appointed Sabari Viswanathan as its chief technology officer-in-residence.

Sabari is an IIT-Madras alumnus who currently lives in Pennsylvania, US, and has worked for 20 years in the enterprise software space, with companies such as Siebel, Zoom Systems, Arris, Cvent, and Vertex, among others.

Sabari also has a keen interest in tennis and has won many amateur tournaments in the Bay Area.

ConveGenius inks deal with Goa govt to drive education reforms

Education startup ConveGenius says it has signed a deal with the government of Goa to drive education reforms across schools in the state as part of the Vidhya Samiksha Kendras project.

As part of the deal, the Goa education department will launch academic, administrative and registry management chatbots on ConveGenius' SwiftChat conversational AI platform to record attendance, and facilitate digital home learning, among other things.

Edited by Suman Singh