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Funding Rundown: Inventus India launches $120M Fund IV, Country Delight raises $108M, Dallas Venture Capital closes $80M Fund II, Innoviti raises addition $9.6M & ShopSe bags $6.1M

Funding Rundown: Inventus India launches $120M Fund IV, Country Delight raises $108M, Dallas Venture Capital closes $80M Fund II, Innoviti raises addition $9.6M & ShopSe bags $6.1M

By Aishwarya Anand  May 26, 2022 8:47 PM IST (Updated)

Here’s a lowdown of the top deals in the startup space.

Here’s a lowdown of the top deals from the startup space.

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Inventus India launches $120M Fund IV, rebrands to Athera Venture Partners
Early-stage venture capital firm Inventus India has launched its fourth fund that seeks to raise $120 million (Rs 900 crore) and has rebranded itself as Athera Venture Partners.
The firm said it will invest only in Indian companies through the fourth fund across sectors such as the Internet of Things, Consumer Internet, Mobile, SaaS, Enterprise Software, FinTech, Web 3.0 and Deep Technology. Fund IV will invest with ticket sizes between ₹5-45 crore, and follow it up in future rounds.
“With our new fund raise, we wish to literally triple down on the startup ecosystem in India that is on a bullish growth trajectory,” said Rutvik Doshi, General Partner, Athera Venture Partners.
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Inventus has invested in 33 companies so far, and has made six profitable exits, one via the initial public offering (IPO) of insurance aggregator PolicyBazaar.
Country Delight raises $108M in Series D funding
Country Delight, a D2C food essentials brand, has raised $108 million in a Series D round of funding led by Venturi Partners and Temasek with participation from SWC Global and Trifecta Capital.
Existing investors, IIFL Asset Management, Elevation Capital, Orios Venture Partners and Matrix Partners India also participated in this round. Avendus Capital acted as the exclusive financial advisor to Country Delight on this transaction.
This deals takes the company’s total funding to $147 million.
Dallas Venture Capital closes $80M Fund II, to raise separate India fund of $50M
Dallas Venture Capital (DVC) has closed an $80 million fund, called the B2B SaaS Fund II, for early stage B2B SaaS startups. The company is also raising a separate fund in India, DVC India Fund 1, to provide opportunities to Indian investors and has raised $20 million of its $50 million target.
DVC India Fund 1 has already made investments in enterprise skilling startup Disprz and anti-money laundering startup IntelleWings, it said in a statement.
The US Fund II will invest alongside its $50 million India fund. Across both the funds, Dallas Venture Capital plans to invest $130 million across B2B SaaS startups over the next 4-5 years.
“We are confident that both the funds, which are truly cross border in nature, will emerge as significant contributors to the growth of Indian SaaS start-ups,” said Shyam Penumaka, Partner at DVC. “Currently, the focus of DVC India Fund is on raising the remaining capital from institutional investors, family offices, and high net worth individuals keen on participating in the flourishing Indian deep technology B2B SaaS sector,” added Penumaka.
VC firm Riverwalk launches Rs 150 Cr fund for investing in startups
Venture capital fund Riverwalk has launched a Rs 150-crore fund to back startups. The Fund is anchored by the Singapore based, Thakral Group and has been backed by leading business houses across India and Singapore.
As per the company, Riverwalk has a sector agnostic investment approach with preferred sectors such as enterprise SaaS, fintech and consumer-tech and consumer brands.
The fund will invest up to Rs 10 crore per startup, and has already made 4 investments. Riverwalk’s portfolio includes, AI based contract automation startup, Spotdraft; one stop ayurveda platform, The Ayurveda Experience; community & commerce platform for parents, Mylo; and housing finance platform, Homeville.
The VC fund aims to release the funds within 18 months.
Fintech firm Three Wheels United bags $10M in Series A round
Fintech firm for electric vehicle financing Three Wheels United has raised $10 million from UK-based logistics and distribution company Delta Holdings and other investors.
The Series A funding round is a combination of equity and debt from Delta Corp Holdings with participation from existing investor Techstars as well as investors in the Middle-east, Europe and from Grip Invest, Three Wheels United (TWU) said.
The fresh investment will be used for entry into new geographies across domestic and international markets, strengthening operations in existing cities, enhancing TWU's technology platform, besides growing its customer base, it said. The company said it intends to launch the two-wheelers category of loan and expand to 10 more cities by the end of this year.
Innoviti raises addition $9.6M funding led by Dutch investor FMO
Digital payment solutions provider Innoviti has secured an additional Rs 75 crore ($9.6 million) as part of its Series D funding round from existing investor, Dutch development bank FMO.
The fintech startup will raise another Rs 125 crore in the next few weeks towards the final closing of its Series D round at Rs 280 crore, it said in a statement. In January, Innoviti had raised Rs 80 crore in a mix of equity and debt from Trifecta Debt Fund, Patni Advisors, and Bessemer Venture Partners, besides a clutch of angel investors. With the latest funding, Innoviti has raised a total of Rs 155 crore ($19.9 million) in the ongoing round.
The firm will use the fresh capital for funding working capital for its enterprise business, marketing of mid-market products, further strengthening of the technology platforms for online and B2B payments and tactical acquisitions in the areas of data sciences and marketing technologies.
Matrix Parners, Accel invest $7M in MSME fintech startup NAKAD
Supply-chain financing provider Nakad has raised $7 million in its seed funding round co-led by Accel and Matrix Partners India, along with participation from AdvantEdge Founders.
Other angel investors that participated in this round include Harshil Mathur and Shashank Kumar (Founders, Razorpay),  Amrit Acharya and Rahul Sharma (Founders, Zetwerk), Sachin Agrawal, Aniket Deb and Ankit Tomar (Founders, Bizongo), Nitin Gupta (CEO, Uni Cards), Raghunandan G (CEO, Zolve), Rangarajan Krishna (CEO, Five Star Business Finance), Arindam Bhattacharya (Managing Director & Senior Partner and former India Head, BCG), Sharad Verma and Pranay Mehrotra (Managing Directors & Senior Partners, BCG).
The company will deploy the funds to aggressively hire, build a world-class product and scale operations within India, it said in a statement.
Digital EMI marketplace ShopSe bags $6.1M from BEENEXT, Chiratae Ventures and others
ShopSe, an EMI digital platform has raised $6.1 million as a part of its strategic Series A funding from BEENEXT, Chiratae Ventures and White Venture Capital.
The fresh capital will enable ShopSe to accelerate serviceability to 150,000 more retailers, continue to build a top-quality team, grow lender partnerships and further enhance platform capabilities to enable over 45 million Indian consumers with convenient affordability. This funding round comes just after a year of raising a seed round of $5.5 million.
“With the help of our lending partners, we have been able to bring change for 35,000 retailers serving customers in 500+ locations across the country. We are committed to solving for convenient affordability at point of purchase by working with our partners to build the right digital offerings for the market,” said Pallav Jain, Co-founder and CEO, ShopSe.
NFT music platform FanTiger raises $5.5M in seed funding round
ArtistFirst Technology, which runs music NFT marketplace FanTiger, has raised $5.5 million in a seed round led by Multicoin Capital. The round also saw participation from Krafton, Pravega Ventures, GAMA, Woodstock Fund, IOSG Ventures and Polygon Studios.
Angel investors like Sandeep Nailwal (Co-founder of Polygon), Gokul Rajaram (Board Member - Coinbase), Prashant Malik (Founder - Tykhe Block Ventures) and Miten Sampat (CRED), also participated in the fundraise.
“The company plans to use the funds raised to grow its team across Product, Tech, extend industry partnerships and onboard well-known and aspiring Indian Artists”, said Prashan Agarwal, CEO and Co-founder, FanTiger.
Esports fan engagement startup STAN raises $2.5 M in seed funding
Bengaluru-headquartered blockchain-based esports fan engagement startup STAN has raised an equity funding of $2.5 million in its seed round. The round was led by venture capital firm General Catalyst, alongside other VCs including Better Capital and Eximius Ventures.
It also saw participation from multiple superangels such as Aadil Mamujee from Opensea, and Nakul Gupta from Coinbase.
The amount raised in this round will be utilised by STAN to provide unparalleled, best-in-class experiences to today's gaming and esports fans worldwide by launching its flagship platform, as well as to extensively partner with a plethora of top gaming organisations and players across India and other countries in parallel, the startup said in a statement.
SpeEdLabs receives an additional funding from IDF
AI-based edtech platform SpeEdLabs has marked final close of its pre-Series round at $2.5 million after raising additional capital from 35 North Venture - India Discovery Fund.
The round also saw participation from investors including Mumbai Angels, LetsVenture, Ecosystem Ventures, Ah Ventures, SucSeed Ventures and a few family offices. 
The startup will use the fresh funds to grow its presence and strengthen infrastructure. 
Taxbuddy.com raises $2.10M in funding led by Zenith Global
Taxbuddy.com, an online tax advisory company has raised $2.10 million (about Rs 16 crore) in funding led by UAE-based fund Zenith Global.
The company which offers subscription-based plans of tax advisory using automation technologies, will use the funding to enhance its technology capabilities, as per a statement.
The online tax advisory company claims to have 4.5 lakh users on its platform. “Advisory automation is the next big thing in fintech. At TaxBuddy.com, we have been focused on the same since the beginning,” said Sujit Bangar, Founder, Taxbuddy.com.
Almo secures $2M from IPV, LetsVenture and others
Almo, a D2C brand in the men’s premium essential wear space, has closed its pre-Series A funding of $2 million led by Inflection Point Ventures along with LetsVenture, AngelList India, and angel investors.
Almo intends to bolster its branding and marketing efforts along with setting up its state-of-the-art R&D lab to continue innovating on sustainable product lines, it said.
“With this funds infusion we plan to continue strengthening our team & brand to scale across various online marketplaces, though D2C continues to be our primary channel which has been an edge against the traditional incumbents. We also plan to explore international markets this year via Amazon's Global Selling Propel Accelerator program access,” said Abhishek Shah, Co-Founder and CEO, Almo.
D2C footwear brand CHUPPS gets $1.5M in Pre-Series A round
CHUPPS, a D2C footwear brand, has raised $1.5 million in its Pre-Series A round led by Green Frontier Capital, a Green tech venture fund. The company has also appointed Soumitra Dutta, one of its founding advisors, as an advisor on its own board.
The round also saw participation from other investors such as Gunavanth Vaid from 4G Capital, Kaushal Vora from Genesis Packaging, Swanand Kelkar from Breakout Capital Advisors and Gaurav Mathrawala from Mathsons Re-insurance Brokers.
The company is launching a sustainable sneaker in September this year with 16 colours. Additionally, it will also be launching outdoor wear for both women and men.
“The new funding from GFC will open-up many additional investment avenues in future, since many funds are looking to invest in sustainable ventures such as ours,” said Gaurav Agarwal, co-founder, CHUPPS.
Lumos Labs raises $1.1M in seed round to launch metaverse platform
Lumos Labs has announced the launch of a metaverse platform for developers to learn, earn, and explore opportunities after raising over $1.1 million in a seed round.
The seed round was led by global Web3.0 venture fund Delta Blockchain Fund, and included funding from venture capitalists such as Superblock, Next Web Capital, Arcanum Capital, AG Build, Paradigm Shift Capital, and multiple angel investors from the Web3.0 ecosystem.
“With the transition to the metaverse, we are now looking forward to strengthen and enable Web3.0 developers as they access global opportunities, incentives, and knowledge on a single platform,” said Kaavya Prasad, Founder, Lumos Labs.
EV startup Hala secures $1M funding from Magnifiq Securities
Hyderabad-based electric ride-sharing platform Hala has raised $1 million in a funding round led by Magnifiq Securities.
The startup will use the fresh funds to significantly increase the number of electric vehicles, improve infrastructure for swapping, and research and develop new product offerings, it said.
Part of T-Hub’s Lab32 and T-Angel programme, Hala Mobility claims to have achieved a 40 percent raise in Monthly Recurring Revenue (MRR). The programme also enabled Hala to be investment-ready through pitch review, financial projections, valuation certificate, funding need estimation and equity exchange.
We Founder Circle invests $325K in drone logistic startup TSAW
Drone logistic startup TSAW (Technology in Space and Aero Works), has bagged $325,000 in a seed funding round led by We Founder Circle.
The round witnessed participation from investors including Kartik Hajela (Founder Log9 materials), Soonicorn Ventures, early stage startup accelerator Pedal Start and strategic investment by Zypp Electric. The brand was bootstrapped so far, and this is its first fundraise.
TSAW will use a major part of the fresh capital in team building and fuelling operations. The rest of the fund will be equally divided in marketing and R&D, it said in a statement. The firm is also targeting to start its services in three Tier 1 cities by the end of this financial year and aims to reach each and every village in the next 5 years.
PreSkale Raises $500K in a pre-seed round led by BoldCap
Tech startup PreSkale has raised $500,000 in a pre-seed funding round led by BoldCap, with participation from PointOne Capital.
Strategic angel investors including Sathya Nellore Sampath, Ajith Sowndararajan, Vaidhyanathan, Jayagopal and Archana Priyadarshini, also pitched in.
The company will use the funds to grow its customer base by 20 times and team size by three times over the next 12 months and also invest in go-to-market (GTM) strategy and marketing initiatives to increase reach and awareness, it said in a statement.
Maruti Suzuki leads strategic funding round in DaveAI
DaveAI, a virtual AI avatar led sales experience platform, has raised a strategic round of funding led by Maruti Suzuki, GHV and Hakuhodo. The round also saw participation from existing investors Mumbai Angels Network and IIIT Seed fund.
“This strategic round of investment will help us meet growing global demand for assisted digital sales experiences. We have scaled rapidly in the last year with these strategic partnerships and are in early discussions about our SeriesA round to take us through the next phase of global growth,” said Sriram P H, Co-founder and CEO, DaveAI.
Maruti Suzuki, is leading this round by making their first investment through the Maruti Suzuki Innovation Fund. "The investment would help MSI strengthen its offering to customers by creating a customised sales experiences on the web, virtual reality and augmented reality,” the auto major said in a regulatory filing.
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