Startup news and updates: daily roundup (June 30, 2023)

YourStory presents the daily news roundup from the Indian startup ecosystem and beyond. Here's the roundup for Friday, June 30, 2023.

Startup news and updates: daily roundup (June 30, 2023)

Friday June 30, 2023,

7 min Read


Aditya Birla Sun Life AMC raises Rs 893 Cr For India Equity Services Fund

Aditya Birla Sun Life AMC Limited, a subsidiary of Aditya Birla Capital Limited—an investment manager to Aditya Birla Sun Life Mutual Fund (ABSLMF), has fetched a commitment of Rs 893 crore for its India Equity Services Fund, a close-ended Category III Alternate Investment Fund. The fund was launched on October 31, 2022 and closed on June 14, 2023.

The fund seeks to invest in companies in the services sector having strong service-driven business models by leveraging in-house research for identifying leading companies in the service sector.

It has already deployed Rs 504 crore as of June 21, 2023 across 30+ companies with a service-driven business strategy. Top sectoral bets of the fund include financial services, information technology, energy, services, FMCG, and healthcare.

“The services sector is the core growth engine of our economy, and this fund serves as a platform for investors to become a part of India’s growth story," said A Balasubramanian, Managing Director and CEO, Aditya Birla Sun Life AMC. "The fund's concentrated portfolio, coupled with flexible drawdown plans, empowers investors to navigate market volatility and mitigate the risk associated with timing the markets.”

InCruiter bags Rs 20 lakh debt funding under Startup India

Interview solution provider InCruiter has secured Rs 20 lakh in debt-based funding from the government, under the Startup India scheme. After undergoing a rigorous selection process and fulfilling all necessary formalities, InCruiter was selected to receive this funding, which will be instrumental in supporting its expansion plans.

The funding will be primarily utilised for InCruiter's location and company expansion initiatives. The company intends to expand its development team and expand its reach globally. 

"We are incredibly grateful to the government for choosing us. It will empower us to execute our expansion plans and strengthen our presence in the HR tech industry," said Anil Agarwal CEO and Co-founder of InCruiter (IaaS). "With the additional resources at our disposal, we are confident in our ability to accelerate our growth and deliver exceptional value to our clients and stakeholders."

Over the next six months, InCruiter plans to double its team size through aggressive hiring and increased employee engagement. 

Other news

Zoho launches student edition of Zoho Books

Sridhar Vembu

On the 75th CA Day, which falls on July 1, Zoho Books, the company's cloud accounting solution, is launching a free student edition.

The edition is being launched to enable future accounting professionals with practical knowledge and enhance their digital literacy through a modern solution. It entails all the key features required for a finance professional's accounting needs, along with business insights necessary to grow their firms and their client's businesses in the future.

Zoho has also partnered with 25 educational institutes where experienced CAs will train students to use Zoho Books in Bengaluru, Coimbatore, Pune, Ahmedabad, and multiple cities in Kerala. Students can practice accounting on the go by downloading the Zoho Books app for iOS, Android and Windows devices.

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Web3 infrastructure provider Zeeve partners with MELD

MELD has partnered with Zeeve, a Web3 infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) platform provider. The collaboration aims to streamline the MELD Node operation process, making it accessible and straightforward for the community, as per MELD—a blockchain-based, non-custodial liquidity protocol.

Zeeve’s ingenious platform aims to allow for effortless onboarding of new Node operators for MELD, removing the requirement for complex coding or intensive technical undertakings.

"Zeeve's scalable services and easy onboarding mechanism have been pivotal in our success of becoming the largest subnet on Avalanche. This collaboration will undoubtedly propel us further in our commitment to our community and the broader Avalanche ecosystem," said Ken Olling, Co-founder of MELD.

"We applaud MELD’s vision of empowering financial independence in the DeFi Ecosystem and are excited to support such initiatives with powerful and reliable infrastructure," said Ravi Chamria, Co-founder of Zeeve.

Ness Digital Engineering acquires MVP Factory

Ness Digital Engineering has acquired MVP Factory—a German-headquartered corporate venture builder and product design studio.

“MVP Factory’s expertise in helping clients incubate and scale digital ventures and design software products further strengthens our strategy to be a specialist in digital engineering,” said Ranjit Tinaikar, Chief Executive Officer, Ness. “We have been deeply impressed by MVP Factory's leadership and team in their distinctiveness and design-based approach to digital innovation," he added.

MVP Factory provides an end-to-end service for digital venture and product building and has pioneered the venture studio model with global clients such as DB Schenker. It allows clients to ideate, validate, launch and scale digital ventures using lean and agile methodologies.

“Joining Ness Digital Engineering, backed by KKR, offers a fascinating opportunity for the global expansion of MVP Factory,” said Philipp Petrescu, MVP Factory’s Founder and CEO. “Through our combined offering, Ness can further solidify its position as one of the few at-scale pure digital engineering players that seamlessly manages projects from new venture ideation and incubation to technical execution.”

The transaction is expected to close at the end of June 2023. Financial details were not disclosed.

IIT Jodhpur, KRI Trust launch career guidance programme for BTech students

Higher education

Indian Institute of Technology, Jodhpur joined hands with KRI Trust to launch a 'Career Guidance and Career Assessment' programme at the campus for budding engineers on June 29.

The programme will embed individualised career guidance modules for all students including BTech as part of their curriculum. The initiative is aimed at enabling students to identify their core strengths, inclination and aspirations, and help them to evolve into capable professionals. It will touch upon career guidance, career assessment, career opportunity, career competency building, and developing entrepreneurial aptitude.

“Learning is not attained by chance but must be sought for with passion and diligence. We believe that a student must be empowered to identify his/her strengths, follow their own aspirations, to be distinguished and capable of handling disruptive changes in the profession," said Prof Santanu Chaudhury, Director, IIT Jodhpur. "This programme in collaboration with KRI, an initiative of IIT alumni, will enhance the innate abilities of students to follow their dreams and motivate them to excel in their careers beyond the confines of IIT."

Lead Angels offers investors complimentary access to the brightest startups

Lead Angels, an angel network formed by a team of three originally from IIT Bombay, has

announced a complimentary membership for select investors for one year - a move to introduce

affordable startup investing with like-minded people who evaluate and invest in startups together

ensuring objectivity, knowledge sharing and better results.

Today, Lead Angels is a network of over 400 angel investors from diverse backgrounds from India

and overseas who have invested in more than 100 startups. Their portfolio includes names like Shopkirana, Supr Daily, Godesi, Ockypocky, PlanetSpark, SkyeAir, Dhruva Space and Agrix amongst others.

Sushanto Mitra is the first external CEO of SINE, IIT Bombay. The Lead Angels Investment Committee also comprises E.N. Venkat a graduate of BITS Pilani and IIMA, who is with Aavishkaar Frontier Fund and Prof. Dhruv Nath with a doctorate from IIT Delhi who was a professor at MDI Gurgaon.

“As we celebrate a decade of achievements, we are thrilled to offer this to empower a wider audience

of active and knowledgeable investors and create a vibrant and inclusive ecosystem for startups. This

move aligns with our mission to democratize angel investing and drive innovation to new heights”,

said Mitra.

Since the launch of the SEBI approved Cat I Angel fund in Feb’ 2022, Lead Angels has invested in

over 30 startups with total commitments upwards of INR 80 Crores.

(This article will be updated with the latest news throughout the day.)

Edited by Kanishk Singh