Here’s a lowdown of the top deals from the startup universe.
Sharechat set to raise $500 million at $5 billion valuation
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Social media platform Sharechat's parent company, which also runs short-video platform Moj, is in the process of raising $500 million and will be valued north of $5 billion, as per sources. The round will be led by new and existing investors, though CNBC-TV18 could not confirm the names of the next investors.
Sharechat counts Temasek, Snap Inc, Tiger Global, Moore Strategic Ventures and Twitter among existing investors. Sharechat’s valuation is expected to cross $5 billion post-funding, two people aware of the matter said. Sharechat was last valued at $2.8 billion in July post $145 million fundraise. The company had turned unicorn in April when it was valued at $2.1 billion in April. The company is also said to be in talks to acquire competitor MX Takatak from Times Internet, as per reports.
Purplle closes $140 million Series D funding round, adding Premji Invest to cap table
E-commerce marketplace for beauty products Purplle has raised $65 million in a Series D funding round led by Premji Invest, at a valuation of about $600 million. The company earlier raised $75 million funding, led by Kedaara Capital, alongside Sequoia Capital India and Blume Ventures. The fresh infusion will accelerate the company’s growth, it said in a statement.
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The company grew its marketing investments by two times to build brand Purplle and has doubled its new customer acquisition. The company claims that 65-70 percent of revenue comes from returning users while its loyalty programme, contributes to 25 percent of the platform's revenue. Purplle has built a community-led platform and has grown its Gross Merchandising Value (GMV) by 6X in the last three years and is currently at a Rs 1,200 crore run rate, said the company in its press statement.
Salesken secures $22 million in Series B funding from Microsoft, Sequoia
Sales conversation Artificial Intelligence startup Salesken has bagged $22 million in a Series B round of funding, led by M12, Microsoft's Venture Fund and participation from existing investor Sequoia India. Abhi Kumar, Partner at M12, will be the new member of the board at Salesken. The startup plans to use the funds raised to accelerate expansion into the North American market and further invest in its deep-tech product.
"SalesKen has dramatic outcomes on sales conversions, improving top-line by 20-25 percent within a few months of use. This RoI impact has seen us grow by over 300 percent in the last year," said SalesKen co-founder Surga Thilakan. Salesken's launched commercial operations in January 2020. The startup is headquartered in Bengaluru and has operations in Delaware, US.
Euler Motors bags $10 million in funding led by QRG Investments
Electric vehicle maker Euler Motors has raised additional capital of $10 million (around Rs 74 crore) from a clutch of investors, led by QRG Investments and Holdings. This marks the first investment by QRG Investments and Holdings in an EV brand in India, the company said in a release.
Existing investors Inventus Capital India, Blume Ventures, ADB Ventures, Jetty Ventures and Kailash Trust also participated in the latest round of capital infusion. Euler Motors has now raised a total of $21.6 million since its inception in 2018. The platform also said it plans to raise $50 million in a Series B funding round next year. The startup launched its first e-three-wheeler cargo HiLoad late last month.
The company plans to utilise these funds to scale up and strengthen its production capacity to deliver the strong order line-up for HiLoad and also prepare to cater to the strong demand from the retail segment. The funds will also be utilized for expanding presence in North and South India markets in the next 2-3 quarters, Euler Motor said.
GetSetUp raises additional $10 million to bring health and wellness solutions to seniors
Older adults upskilling startup GetSetUp has raised $10 million in seed-extension funding from Cowboy Ventures and LightShed Ventures. This follows an $11 million seed round last October led by edtech investing firm Rethink Education with participation from Yahoo co-founder Jerry Yang’s AME Cloud Ventures.
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The funding comes in the form of “simple agreement for future equity” (SAFE) contracts where the investor is given rights to receive equity of the startup in the case of certain triggering events like future rounds of funding or sale of the company.
Founded in 2020, GetSetUp offers skill classes to adults over the age of 55 through their website. The startup has also penned an agreement with Tivity Health which will allow the US-based digital healthcare company’s members to access GetSetUp for free.
D2C startup Sleepy Owl secures $6.5 million in Series A funding
D2C coffee brand Sleepy Owl has raised $6.5 million in a Series-A funding round. It was led by existing investor Rukam Capital, followed by DSG Consumer Partners, also an existing investor. Dexter Capital was the exclusive financial advisor to the deal. The company said that it is slated to close with an ARR of Rs 60 crore by March 2022.
Sleepy Owl aims to solidify their core team, build a robust distribution network across India for increased demand of its brews, and firm up its marketing initiatives. "We plan to utilise the funds to go deeper into our existing retail markets across India and add as we grow,” said Ajai Thandi, who co-founded Sleepy Owl.
Founded in 2016, Sleepy Owl’s portfolio includes Cold Brew Packs, Hot Brew Bags, Ready-to-Drink Cold Brew Bottles, Ground Coffee, Brew Box and a range of merchandise.
Agritech startup Fasal raises $4 million in pre-Series A round
Agritech startup Fasal has raised a $4 million pre-Series A round from 3one4 Capital and existing investors Omnivore and Wavemaker Partners. Other investors in this round include Genting Ventures (Malaysia), The Yield Lab Asia-Pacific, Antares Investments, and Sandeep Singhal of Nexus.
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Fasal will use the funds raised in this round to expand their business across India and Southeast Asia, strengthen their full-stack services, and ramp up hiring for their sales and marketing, agronomy, and technology teams, the company said in a statement.
By ensuring maximum yield from small farms, Fasal’s eco-friendly and affordable precision farming solution is disrupting the $42 billion progressive horticulture industry, it added.
OneCare raises $1 million in pre-seed round led by Multiply Ventures and Better Capital
Diabetes care Startup OneCare has raised approximately $1 million in a pre-seed investment round led by Multiply Ventures and Better Capital. The funding round also saw participation from a host of angel investors including Kunah Shah (Founder, Cred), Shashank ND (Cofounder, Practo), Saikiran Krishnamurthy (Founder, xto10x), Ankit Bhati (Cofounder, Ola), Zishaan Hayath (Founder, Toppr), Farooq Adam (Cofounder, Fynd), Anand Shah (Cofounder, Ola Electric), Shariq Plasticwala (Ex-Amazon Pay Head, and Founder, Kafka Academy), Gaurang Jhunjhunuwala (Partner, McKinsey), Nikhil Bhandarkar (Founder Panthera Peak Ventures), Dinesh Advani (Cofounder, Playshifu), Aditya Kulkarni (Cofounder, Stoa School), Jonathan Chan (Chief of Staff, Freetrade) and Amit Ghorawat (CoFounder, Bicycle.Ai).
The startup in a statement said it plans to utilise the fund for product development along with clinic partnerships, and to strengthen its workforce across teams like tech, clinical solutions, marketing, and operations.
OneCare leverages AI and IOT technology, behavioural science, and clinical science to reimagine clinics that provide 10x better outcomes to patients with chronic diseases like diabetes.
Test prep firm Toppersnotes raises $1 million from Inflection Point
Test prep startup Toppersnotes has raised $1 million in a seed round led by Inflection Point Ventures. The round also saw participation from LetsVenture, PlanB Capital, Pulkit Agrawal (CEO - Trell), Ashish Sharma, (MD - Innoven Capital) and other notable angels. The firm will leverage the fundraise to acquire talent, boost technology and expand presence across exams, it said in a statement.
Founded in 2015, Toppersnotes is an education initiative and the team has realised a “Phygital” solution to bringing coaching-like quality at a low price. The startup is currently active in over 70 exams like UPSC, GATE, NEET, IIT, SSC, BANK and State-level government job exams.
Toppernotes is the 40th deal for Inflection Point Ventures in 2021. According to the company, it has invested Rs 292 crore across 100 deals to date and is on track to invest Rs 155 crore across 60 startups by the year-end.
Neev Fund II announces Series B investment into Chakr Innovation
Sustainability and SME focused Neev Fund II managed SBI Group’s alternative asset manager SBICap Ventures has announced an undisclosed investment in Series B funding of emission control device manufacturing company Chakr Innovation. Launched in 2016, Chakr Innovation’s emission control device mitigates pollution at the source and captures harmful particulate matter emissions.
"This equity infusion will help accelerate commercialisation of our innovative technologies for climate action and also help us expand our world-class customer base," said Kushagra Srivastava and Bharti Singhla, founders of Chakr Innovation in a joint statement.
The fund was announced during the EU-India Leaders Meeting and has secured the backing of the European Investment Bank (EIB), Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, Govt of UK, and the State Bank of India (SBI). According to the fund, it aims to provide growth and expansion capital to SMEs working towards efficient use of raw materials, water, clean energy, sustainable mobility, and circular economy.
(Edited by : Jomy Jos Pullokaran)