Startup news and updates: Daily roundup (December 27, 2023)

YourStory presents the daily news roundup from the Indian startup ecosystem and beyond. Here's the roundup for Wednesday, December 27, 2023.

Startup news and updates: Daily roundup (December 27, 2023)

Wednesday December 27, 2023,

4 min Read

Funding

Escrowpay surpasses $6.6M in funding, launches BizSuraksha

Escrowpay, a digital escrow platform, has raised $600,000 from existing investors, bringing its total capital raised to $6.6 million. The funding is part of the ongoing Series A round with the aim to raise $15 million.

Escrowpay earlier secured the first digital escrow regulatory fintech authorisation from IFSCA, GIFT City.

The company currently serves over 3,000 clients, including SMEs, unicorns, listed enterprises, and emerging digital-first businesses across India. The capital injection will be used to accelerate initiatives, support growth areas, and foster innovation within the payments ecosystem.

It is backed by prominent investors such as Bennett Coleman & Co Ltd, Tano India Opportunities Fund, Zenith Global Group, We Founder Circle, Angel List, JB Ventures, Inflection Point Ventures, and Chhattisgarh Investments.

Other news

EKA Mobility partners with Mitsui and VDL Groep

EKA Mobility, an Indian electric vehicle and technology company, has partnered with Mitsui & Co Ltd and VDL Groep to establish global original equipment manufacturers (OEMs). This strategic partnership aims to propel India towards becoming a global hub for sustainable transportation.

Under the cooperation, EKA Mobility is set to receive significant investments from Mitsui, a global trading and investment company, and a technological support and equity partnership from VDL Groep, a Dutch technology and manufacturing company, aiming to create sustainable transportation and manufacturing excellence.

eka Mobility

EKA Mobility

EKA Mobility is an Indian company that offers end-to-end design, manufacturing, and technology of new energy vehicles from scratch in India. With more than 500 electric buses and more than 5,000 electric light commercial vehicles in the pipeline, the company has a state-of-the-art R&D, engineering and innovation centre in Pune.

EKA has introduced electric city buses, staff carriers, school buses, and 9-meter hydrogen fuel-cell electric buses, and is now entering last-mile delivery with its range of e-LCVs.

Xero EVs and VoltUp partners for last-mile delivery solutions

Electric two-wheeler maker Xero EVs and battery-swapping platform VoltUp have announced a strategic collaboration for last-mile delivery solutions across 12 Indian markets.

The partnership will use Xero's Mink electric vehicle product and VoltUp's advanced swappable battery network of around 200 stations.

The goal is to get 15,000 electric two-wheelers on the road within two years. Key highlights of the partnership include a comprehensive ecosystem tailored to meet last-mile delivery partners' specific needs, including efficiency, reliability, and sustainability.

Xero's energy-efficient products, such as Mink and Bolt, are designed and developed in India.

The VoltUp swappable battery network enables battery swapping within 60 seconds, ensuring a seamless last-mile delivery experience.

CLEAR Premium Water to acquire majority stake in KELZAI Volcanic Water

CLEAR Premium Water has acquired a majority stake in KELZAI Volcanic Water, a natural mineral water sourced from volcanic springs.

KELZAI Volcanic Water will be exclusively distributed and marketed by Energy Beverages Private Limited, the parent company of CLEAR Premium Water, leveraging its pan India presence.

TeamLease EdTech, IIT Patna, NSDC ink MOU 

TeamLease EdTech, Indian Institute of Technology Patna, and NSDC have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to accelerate the development of employability-focused learning programs.

The MOU aims to provide work-linked hybrid degree programmes to students aspiring to graduate from the premier institution, improving their employer signalling value.

TL Edtech IIT Patna and NSDC

TL Edtech IIT Patna and NSDC

These programmes offer practical hands-on skills training, monthly stipends for interns, flexibility in online and on-the-job training, credit mobility options, and a signalling of skill building alongside academic prudence. The partnership aims to strengthen joint advocacy and support efforts to create an alternative format of higher education.

Zomato introduces PicNic AI

Food aggregator Zomato has introduced PicNic AI, a tool that uses Stable Diffusion to improve the visual appeal of food images uploaded by restaurant partners.

It uses deep learning and diffusion generative AI to create visually appealing images, with a text prompt describing the final product. However, to showcase the original dish, the InPainting Variant of Stable Diffusion is used.

The tool transforms basic images into studio-quality images. With over one lakh monthly images benefiting from the tool, it makes professional-quality food photography accessible to restaurant partners, benefiting both Zomato's network and millions of customers.

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


Edited by Kanishk Singh