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VC funding crosses $1B mark in May; A tête-à-tête with Zeenat Aman

Agnikul Cosmos is targeting escape velocity with the launch of satellites as early as next year.

VC funding crosses $1B mark in May; A tête-à-tête with Zeenat Aman

Monday June 03, 2024 , 4 min Read

Hello,

Agnikul Cosmos is targeting escape velocity with the launch of satellites as early as next year.

Last week, the spacetech startup successfully launched Agnibaan SOrTeD (suborbital technology demonstrator), powered by the world’s first single-piece 3D-printed rocket engine, which lasted for 66 seconds.

According to Srinath Ravichandran, Co-founder and CEO of Agnikul, the 3D-printed semi-cryogenic engines and the rocket will offer quick turnaround for customers who can have customised launch vehicles for their satellites.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Commerce and Industry may propose a dedicated policy for deeptech startups to promote innovation in the forthcoming budget after the new government forms in India.

ICYMI: What is the Internet of Bodies?

Lastly, inside the greatest show on Earth: Taylor Swift

Still in our Swifties era! 

In today’s newsletter, we will talk about 

  • VC funding crosses $1B mark in May
  • ICYMI: A tête-à-tête with Zeenat Aman

Here’s your trivia for today: In what country would you find the active volcano "Taal"?


Funding

VC funding crosses $1B mark in May

Funding

May turned out to be red hot for the Indian startup ecosystem as venture capital funding rose by 29% annually, crossing the $1 billion mark for the first time this year. 

The total funding for May was $1.31 billion compared to $1 billion in May 2023, as per data from Yourstory Research. This sharp increase in VC funding can be attributed to the large deals from Meesho and Pharmeasy.

Key takeaways:

  • On a month-on-month basis, VC funding rose by 56% with $848 million for April 2024.
  • In terms of stage-wise funding, the late-stage category received the highest amount at $605 million. Early-stage startups attracted $365 million.
  • Healthtech followed by social commerce and fintech sectors were the investor favourites for the month.


Interview

ICYMI: A tête-à-tête with Zeenat Aman

Zeenat Aman

At 72, Zeenat Aman is defying the myth of ageing and enjoying new-found stardom on social media by connecting to an audience far younger than her. 

Aman’s Instagram persona is that of a star who is not afraid of straight talk. Whether she’s asking couples to live together before getting married, talking about how her ‘sex symbol’ tag is difficult to shake off, or describing her competitive streak,  Aman tells it the way it is–without the need to please everyone.

New chapter: 

  • Aman’s fans traverse different generations. As she revealed in a recent Instagram post, 60% of her followers are between the ages of 25 and 44 years–an audience that has perhaps never seen her in her heydays.
  • Aman doesn’t see herself as someone who can just post pictures of herself or write endless banalities. 
  • She is of the view that public figures play a huge role in shaping and guiding conversations–in the living room and on the national stage.


News & updates

  • Investments: Saudi state oil giant Aramco commenced its secondary public offering as the company looks to raise close to $12 billion. Books opened on Sunday offering a price range between 26.70 and 29 Saudi Riyals per share. Aramco said it plans to sell 1.545 billion shares — a stake of around 0.64% in the company.
  • Oil: OPEC+ agreed on Sunday to prolong its deep oil output cuts in 2024 and discussed extending them to 2025, sources said as the group seeks to shore up the market amid tepid global demand growth, high interest rates, and rising US production.
  • Hack: Live Nation said a hacker is allegedly offering user data primarily from Ticketmaster for sale on the dark web. Live Nation said it identified “unauthorised activity” on May 20 and launched a probe with forensic investigators into the potential hack. Live Nation is the parent company of Ticketmaster.


What you should watch out for

  • Elections: The results of the Lok Sabha elections 2024 will be announced on June 4.
  • Market: Indian stock markets expect a bullish opening this week ahead of the Lok Sabha election results.
  • RBI Monetary Policy: The RBI’s rate-setting monetary policy panel will begin deliberations for the second policy verdict of the current fiscal 2024-25 this week.


In what country would you find the active volcano "Taal"?

Answer: The Philippines. The complex volcano is located on the island of Luzon.


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