Here's a lowdown of the top deals from the startup space this week.
CarDekho turns unicorn with $250 million fundraise
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Car search platform CarDekho has announced a $250 million round of funding that included $200 million Series E equity and $50 million debt in its pre-IPO round. With the latest fundraising, CarDekho joins the unicorn club with a valuation of $1.2 billion. The funding round was led by LeapFrog Investments, a global impact investor focused on financial services and healthcare access.
It is the largest fundraise by CarDekho and the company said the proceeds will be used to accelerate CarDekho’s growth in the Used Car transactions, financial services and insurance businesses, and to build product and technology functions, increase brand awareness, and expand into new markets.
Digital payment service MobiKwik turns unicorn ahead of IPO
Fintech platform MobiKwik's valuation has crossed the $1 billion mark, making it the 33rd Indian start-up to become a unicorn this year. The development comes after MobiKwik’s staff exercised their employee stock ownership plan (Esop) in a secondary sale. The sale was led by Mathew Cyriac, former Blackstone India head.
According to media reports, Cyriac bought shares at almost twice the price he had invested in the start-up earlier this year. Earlier this week, the startup received Sebi's go-ahead to roll out a Rs 1,900 crore initial public offering (IPO). In its draft red herring prospectus (DRHP), MobiKwik had revealed that it reserved 4.5 million equity shares for Esop. Its public offering is expected to hit the market before Diwali.
Ola Electric said to raise $200 million at over $5 billion valuation
Ola Electric has raised $200 million, or about Rs 1,500 crore, from a clutch of investors in a fresh funding round, valuing the electric vehicle maker at more than $5 billion, sources said. The fresh funding comes days after the Bhavish Aggarwal-led company raised $200 million at a post-money valuation of $3 billion.
The latest funding round saw the participation of existing investors and some US-based bluechip tech funds, sources said. The capital will be used to accelerate vehicle development, including mass-market scooters, electric motorcycles and electric cars, as well as other form factors. On September 30, Ola had announced raising more than $200 million from Falcon Edge, SoftBank Group Corp. and others.
Hubilo raises $125 million funding in Series B round
Virtual events platform Hubilo has raised $125 million (about Rs 943 crore) in funding, led by Alkeon Capital. Lightspeed Venture Partners and Balderton Capital also participated in the Series B round. This brings the company's total fund raise to $153 million to date.
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The company will use the funds to further enhance its growth by developing new business functions, advance innovation of its platform, strengthen its product, engineering, and design teams in India, and go-to-market teams in the US, the UK, Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) and the Asia Pacific. In addition, Hubilo will increase the overall employee count by 150 percent to support its rapid growth plans and to respond to the increased customer demand for virtual and hybrid events.
Neobank startup Open gets $100 million in Series C round from Temasek, Google & others
Neobanking startup Open which is focused on Small and medium enterprises has secured $100 million in a Series C funding round led by Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund Temasek. The round also saw participation from Google and Japan-based SBI Investment, valuing the startup at roughly $500 million.
Existing investors Tiger Global and 3one4 Capital also participated in the round, which is still to be closed. According to the company, it will use the funding to strengthen and accelerate its new product line, which includes its embedded finance platform, Zwitch and cloud-native banking platform, BankingStack. At present, BankingStack is deployed across 15 Indian banks, the company said. The fintech platform is also looking to expand its base to 5 million SMEs across markets of Southeast Asia, Europe and the US.
Antler raises over $300 million for its global fund
Global venture capital firm Antler, which has already made over a dozen bets in India after its launch in the country earlier this year, has raised over $300 million for its fund so far. The investors in the fund include Schroders, Vækstfonden, and Phoenix Group, said Antler in a statement.
Antler will continue with its strategy to extend pre-seed funding to startups primarily but going forward it will also provide follow-on capital to its portfolio companies up to the Series C stage, it added. The venture capital firm also said that it plans to make bets outside its portfolio at the seed and Series A stages.
D2C brand Fraazo raises $50 million in Series B round: Reports
D2C brand in the fresh fruits and vegetable category Fraazo, has raised $50 million in a Series B funding round led by WestBridge Capital. Existing investors Sixth Sense Ventures, Equanimity Investments, Apar Group, along with leading Indian family offices, including Manish Choksi of Asian Paints, also participated in the funding round.
As per reports, the funding round is a mix of equity and debt. After witnessing 5X growth over the last quarter, Fraazo is gearing up to reach 10 million monthly orders in the next 12-18 months. It aims to create a network of over 500 dark stores across the top 15 cities.
M2P Fintech raises $35 million from Tiger Global
API infrastructure platform M2P Fintech has bagged $35 million in its Series C funding round led by Tiger Global Management. Existing investors, BEENEXT, Flourish Ventures, Omidyar Network India, 8i Ventures, Better Capital and the DMI Group, via its investment vehicle Sparkle Fund, also participated in the round. The startup said in a statement it will use the funding to boost its API infrastructure capabilities and expand its footprint beyond Asia.
B2B silk-tech startup ReshaMandi secures $30 million in Series A funding
The silk-tech startup, ReshaMandi which serves as a B2B marketplace for silk farmers, businesses, and retailers in India, has raised $30 million as a part of its Series A funding round led by global alternative investment manager Creation Investments.
The equity plus debt round also saw participation from new investors such as 9 Unicorns, Venture Catalysts, Sandeep Singhal (Nexus), Brijesh Agarwal (founder of IndiaMART), and Omnivore, which also led the seed round of ReshaMandi. Debt investors include Northern Arc, Alteria, Innoven and Stride Ventures, the company said in a statement.
ReshaMandi plans to expand its agricultural business in all major silk-producing states across India while also establishing itself as a leader in weaving clusters like Banaras, Salem, Kanchipuram, Maheshwar, and Dharmavaram. The firm further aspires to strengthen its position in this supply chain with this fresh round of capital.
Melorra secures $24 million in fresh funding
D2C jewellery brand Melorra has raised $24 million, as part of a fresh funding round, from 9Unicorns, Symphony International Holdings Limited, Value Quest, Venture Catalysts, Param Capital and family offices. The fresh capital raised will be used to upgrade the company's technology stack, ramp up brand marketing, and expand Melorra’s experience centres across India, the company said in a statement. The brand has delivered to over 2,700 towns in India so far and clocked 200 percent year-on-year growth, Melorra said in a statement.
SaaS startup Toch.ai bags $11.75 million in Series A round
AI-driven SaaS platform Toch.ai has raised $11.75 million of funding in a Series A round led by Moneta Ventures, Baring Private Equity India, Binny Bansal, Ventureast, 9Unicorns, Anthill Ventures, Cathexis Ventures, SOSV, Artesian, and Innoven Capital.
As per the startup, the fresh funds will be used to scale up its technology infrastructure and venture expansion into global markets with a specific focus on foreign markets. Founded in 2016, Toch uses artificial intelligence technology to process video content including live sporting events, television shows, or library-based content, automatically and instantly.
Policybazaar subsidiary Docprime invests $7.5 million in Visit Health
Docprime Technologies, a fully owned subsidiary of PB Fintech - the parent company of PolicyBazaar and Paisabazaar, has invested around $7.5 million in telehealth and wellness platform Visit Health. According to Docprime, this is the brand’s first investment in an end-to-end telehealth and wellness platform.
Visit Health enables corporate employees to manage their healthcare needs using their smartphones. With this investment, the startup is looking to grow its platform and network capabilities and expand teams across technology, sales and network functions.
Saas startup TrusTrace raises $6 million in series A round
SaaS startup TrusTrace has raised $6 million in a Series A round of funding led by Industrifonden and Fairpoint Capital. The round also saw participation from previous investors BackingMinds along with support from Fashion for Good.
The company claims the proceeds from the round will be utilised to speed worldwide expansion, extend product development, and improve the team to continue providing supply chain transparency to brands.
Biz2Credit plans to invest $100 million in India over next five years
Fintech firm Biz2Credit plans to invest $100 million in India over the next 5 years on research and development as well as expanding operations. The company is also planning to strengthen its technology team by adding over 150 new employees in 2021 across various positions, including entry, mid-and senior-level positions. “We have clocked a massive growth in the revenue with 15-plus new client wins and eyeing a greater leap in the next 10-12 months," Biz2Credit CEO and co-founder Rohit Arora said in a statement.
(Edited by : Jomy Jos Pullokaran)
First Published: Oct 14, 2021 4:24 PM IST