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Meet women entrepreneurs of Meghalaya; Inside air cooler maker Novamax

US-based VC firm Alphatron Capital has closed its inaugural fund at $30 million, surpassing its initial target of $25 million, to invest in India’s tech startups.

Meet women entrepreneurs of Meghalaya; Inside air cooler maker Novamax

Friday March 22, 2024 , 5 min Read


SEBI brings in a new framework for the stock markets. 

The markets regulator will start an optional same-day settlement for 25 stocks with a limited number of brokers on March 28. It introduced the beta version of the T+0 trade settlement cycle on an optional basis, alongside the existing T+1 settlement, wherein trades are settled within 24 hours of execution.

Meanwhile, crypto exchange OKX will halt its India operations from April 30 and has advised users to withdraw their funds by April-end after the Financial Intelligence Unit requested MeitY to block the websites of notified crypto exchanges.

Elsewhere, US-based VC firm Alphatron Capital has closed its inaugural fund at $30 million, surpassing its initial target of $25 million, to invest in India’s tech startups.

In other news, a survey conducted by Ipsos revealed that about 88% of gig workers rely on gig work as their primary source of income. Over two-thirds of gig workers state that platform work provides enough monthly earnings to sustain their livelihood.

On the other hand, only about 37% (25.6 crores) of the 69.2 crores women in India are actively employed as of 2022-23, revealed a new report by talent solutions provider Careernet. This number was at 23.3% in 2017-18. 

ICYMI: Life from close-up shots!

Lastly, these ultimate hero foods can improve your boring meals in seconds!

In today’s newsletter, we will talk about 

  • The women entrepreneurs of Meghalaya
  • Inside air cooler maker Novamax 
  • Anicut Capital’s investment thesis

Here’s your trivia for today: Which F1 Grand Prix course is the shortest on the calendar?


The women entrepreneurs of Meghalaya

Meghalaya entrepreneurs

The zeal for entrepreneurship is high in Meghalaya, with women making up 60% of the state’s business owners. And, thanks to the Promotion and Incubation of Market Driven Enterprises (PRIME) incubation programme, women are exploring diverse forms of entrepreneurship, including making shoes, candles, turmeric, and silk, to even launching digital marketing businesses.

Success story:

  • Launched in 2019, PRIME offers entrepreneurs comprehensive programmes in incubation, mentorship, training, funding access, and networking.
  • Aditya Sen, Project Head of PRIME, attributes the rise in women entrepreneurs to their hard work and other socio-cultural factors, such as Meghalaya being a matrilineal society.
  • To illustrate the programme’s success, Chief Minister Conrad Sangma talks about Laskein Block in Jaintia Hills, where 15 women’s SHGs have received funding for solar-powered turmeric processing units.


Inside air cooler maker Novamax 


The demand for affordable air coolers is on the rise as temperatures soar globally. According to Maximise Market Research, the market for air coolers is anticipated to reach $2.74 billion by 2029 from $1.32 billion in 2022 at a CAGR of 10.9%.  

Cashing in on this demand in India is Noida-based Novamax, founded by Harshit Aggarwal. 

Serving customers:

  • According to Aggarwal, air cooler companies target consumers from lower to middle-income groups. Novamax serves this demographic by maintaining affordable price points without lowering quality.
  • He asserts that Novamax's expertise lies in desert air coolers, which are available at prices ranging from Rs 11,500 to Rs 16,000.
  • Compared to traditional air conditioning units, which can be expensive to run and maintain, Novamax's air coolers use less energy, making it a cost-effective and eco-friendly choice.


Anicut Capital’s investment thesis


Chennai-based Anicut Capital has complete faith in the growth potential of startups. The multi-asset financial firm is in the final stages of raising fresh capital for deployment into startups and aims to grow its AUM to Rs 7,500 crore in FY25 from around Rs 4,500 crore now. 

Key takeaways:

  • The firm sees numerous investment opportunities across small and medium businesses, seed investing, early-stage funding, and possibly even late-stage funding.
  • Anicut Capital launched its first private credit fund in 2016 and ended up raising Rs 400 crore, well above the target size of Rs 250 crore. Its second fund was in 2019, where it raised Rs 850 crore; this capital is fully deployed.
  • The firm plans to close the third fund at around Rs 1,300 crore to Rs 1,350 crore and has already raised 50% of the capital. It is looking to close this fund soon and, in the process, also complete its deployment.

News & updates

  • Legal troubles: The US Department of Justice sued Apple, saying its iPhone ecosystem is a monopoly that drove its “astronomical valuation” at the expense of consumers, developers, and rival phone makers. Apple shares fell over 4% during trading on Thursday.
  • Shutting down: UBS Group AG is planning to shut smaller-value Credit Suisse accounts numbering in the low thousands at its Asia Pacific wealth management arm to exit relationships with poor returns. The lender is reviewing the accounts with a balance of around $2 million or less.
  • Price lock: Reddit priced its stock at $34 a share, the top of the anticipated range, a signal that investors are excited about the company’s IPO. The social media giant raised nearly $500 million in the offering. It will debut on the New York Stock Exchange on Thursday with the ticker symbol “RDDT.”

Which F1 Grand Prix course is the shortest on the calendar?

Answer: Monaco Grand Prix. Also known as the Circuit de Monaco, the track has a length of 3.337 km.

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