Startup news and updates: Daily roundup (January 11, 2024)
YourStory presents the daily news roundup from the Indian startup ecosystem and beyond. Here's the roundup for Thursday, January 11, 2024.
Social network Amealio secures undisclosed pre-seed funding from SucSEED
Amealio—a community-led platform for food and entertainment—raised an undisclosed pre-seed funding round from SucSEED Indovation Fund and ISF Angels led by JA Chowdhary and other angels.
The hyperlocal social network enables users to engage in conversations about food, entertainment, and lifestyle, and build active communities. It currently has pilot partnerships with Dunzo and PetPooja and pilot projects with several firms in Tier II and III towns, according to a statement.
“... Powered by AI, Partnership, and ONDC, Amealio fosters new friendships, reveals hidden gems, and experiences, and creates unforgettable memories. He emphasises the platform's significance in revitalising local communities and redefining how people connect within neighbourhoods. This is how Amealio is filling in a previously existing gap,” Shaker Dixit, Founder and CEO of Amealio, said.
“We are excited to invest in Amealio as it has a unique combination of corporate veterans with first-hand experience in running/owning multiple restaurants across India and the US, and the people who are deeply passionate about food and customer satisfaction on one platform…,” Dhiraj Kumar Sinha, General Partner of SucSEED Indovation Fund, added.
Jewellery brand Salty raises Rs 5.4 Cr from Anicut Capital, others
Delhi-based jewellery brand Salty has secured Rs 5.4 crore in funding from Anicut Capital, All in Capital, Suashish Diamonds, and J K Group.
The firm will use the funds to expand the team and its product line, it said in a statement. It also aims to achieve a Rs 40 crore annual revenue run rate in 2024 and expand its design range to include over 3,000 products, it added.
“We are thrilled to have such experienced consumer space investors as partners. Their support speaks volumes about the potential that is there in this space and we are excited about the opportunities that lie ahead,” said Kanishka Garg, Co-founder of Salty.
Inflection Point Ventures launches accelerator programme for early-stage startups
Venture capital firm Inflection Point Ventures has rolled out a six-week accelerator programme for early-stage startups, designed for entrepreneurs seeking to take their business from the idea stage to the MVP (minimum viable product) stage.
Out of 2,000 expected applicants, 100 will be shortlisted for the IPV Ideaschool Batch 1 programme initially, and 40 of them will proceed to be an active part of the discussion in the accelerator programme. The startups will be evaluated through several rounds across multiple parameters.
At the final stage, the top 15 startups will get a chance to showcase their respective business ideas to a jury. The final five startups emerging from this set stand to bag Rs 80 lakh as investment and an opportunity to become part of the IPV portfolio, the firm said in a statement.
Applications for this opportunity will be open until January 20, 2024.
“IPV Ideaschool—the highly curated programme aims to give an edge to the startups as they will not only secure early-stage funding but also get an opportunity to grow and scale their business rapidly with strategic guidance and IPV’s rich network. At IPV, we are looking for startups that add value to our economy and have sustainable ideas..,” Mitesh Shah, Co-founder of Inflection Point Ventures, said.
TechnoSport signs MoU with Tamil Nadu government for setting up activewear factory
Bengaluru-based activewear brand TechnoSports has signed a pact with the Tamil Nadu government to establish a factory in Erode district. The facility—poised to commence production by March 2024—will specialise in technical textiles, harnessing technologies from Germany, Japan, Italy, and Taiwan.
Boasting a daily capacity of 25 tonnes, the mega factory is anticipated to create over 2,000 jobs in the next four years, the company said.
Barista Coffee opens its 400th outlet in Delhi
Barista Coffee has hit the milestone of setting up 400 outlets in India after opening its latest store in Rajiv Chowk, Delhi.
Founded in 2000, Barista is a leading chain of espresso bars and cafés in India that competes with Third Wave Coffee, Tata-backed Starbucks, and Blue Tokai Coffee Roasters.
“As we expand our presence and strengthen our network reach, the key focus is on guest engagement and consistency in our services. Rajiv Chowk is a unique location, which showcases the brand to a larger universe that commutes through the metro network. I am sure this would become a preferred place for travellers as a perfect meeting hub,” Rajat Agrawal, CEO of Barista Coffee, said.
Unicommerce launches new product for automated reconciliation of returns for sellers
Ecommerce enablement platform Unicommerce has rolled out a new feature UniReco to facilitate easy reconciliation of orders, returns, and payments for brands and retailers across multiple marketplaces.
UniReco will handle return payments by accounting for return logistics costs and any other expenses agreed upon between the seller and the marketplace.
The feature will use an algorithm to match orders, payments, and returns across multiple marketplaces and provides businesses with a real-time view of their reconciliation status, so they can identify and resolve any discrepancies, the company said in a statement.
“UniReco is a significant step forward in our commitment to providing comprehensive post-purchase management solutions. Working with thousands of brands allows us to understand the challenges that businesses face in reconciling payments across various marketplaces, and UniReco addresses this specific need,” Kapil Makhija, CEO of Unicommerce, said.
Menswear brand Snitch expands Bengaluru warehouse
Bengaluru-based menswear brand Snitch has added 50,000 square feet to its Bengaluru warehouse, taking its total capacity to 1 lakh square feet.
The new warehouse facilities are integrating cutting-edge technology like enterprise resource planning systems, performance improvement tools, IoT devices, and potentially automated systems, it said in a statement.
“The expansion brings numerous improvements to our supply chain and logistics operations. Multiple locations are going to significantly improve our inventory accessibility and distribution leading to a streamlined last-mile distribution process,” Siddharth Dungarwal, Founder of Snitch, said.
Online food delivery orders touch record high on New Year’s Eve 2023: Redseer
New Year’s Eve 2023 saw online food delivery orders reach a record high of 6.5 million, up 18% from the previous year, according to estimates by Redseer.
The average order value on the day was 30% higher than other days of the year. The phenomenon was applicable in metropolitan and Tier I towns and cities, the report said.
“Spike days like the IPL, Cricket World Cups, Diwali, NYE, etc., are critical for online food delivery services as customers order more and spend more. It is also important for the brands and platforms to be able to serve the increased load on these days as customer experience cannot be hampered on these celebratory occasions. It was heartening to see the jubilation in the ecosystem on NYE23 with a record number of orders being delivered, while customers reported high satisfaction with the services,” Abhijit Routray, Associate Partner at Redseer, said.
Oister Global’s assets under management touch Rs 100 Cr
Delhi-based institutional investor Oister Global’s assets under management reached Rs 100 crore after deploying capital in various funds, including Blume Ventures.
The milestone was achieved within a quarter of the launch of Oister and underscores the confidence in the potential of the PE-VC ecosystem in India, according to the company.
“Last month, silently, Oister crossed a key threshold since its founding not too long ago - of achieving Rs 100 crore worth of AUM. It is a small drop in the ocean of capital India's startup economy needs over the next five years - as much as $600 billion. Oister promises to multiply its contribution many folds and back some of the smartest VC, PE, and Private Credit Funds in fueling startups and SMEs in India,” Rohit Bhayana, Co-CEO and Co-founder of Oister Global, said.
BFSI Centrum appoints Manish Jain as head of fund management
Banking and financial services institution Centrum has appointed Manish Jain as the head of fund management to lead Centrum’s Portfolio Management Services (PMS) and non-discretionary Equity Advisory verticals.
Jain has more than two decades of experience in the Indian equities market on both buy and sell sides.
Centrum’s wealth business manages over Rs 35,000 crore in client assets. In addition to managing the PMS and non-discretionary equity advisory, Jain will be responsible for introducing new strategies and strengthening and onboarding client relationships, Centrum said in a statement.
“With the relative outperformance of equity markets in CY 2023 and anticipated tailwinds in the coming year, we would like to strengthen our expertise in Equity Advisory and PMS. I am confident that Manish’s vast experience in managing large funds and impeccable track record in delivering healthy returns, will bring immense value to our equity investing strategies and add to client delight,” Sandeep Das, MD and CEO of Centrum Wealth, said.
(The copy was updated to correct a factual error in TechnoSport and Snitch sections.)
(This article will be updated with the latest news throughout the day.)
Edited by Suman Singh