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    Funding Rundown: Tata-backed 1mg turns unicorn, CashFlo secures Rs 70 Cr & Suite42 gets $4.3M in seed round

    Funding Rundown: Tata-backed 1mg turns unicorn, CashFlo secures Rs 70 Cr & Suite42 gets $4.3M in seed round

    Funding Rundown: Tata-backed 1mg turns unicorn, CashFlo secures Rs 70 Cr & Suite42 gets $4.3M in seed round
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    By Aishwarya Anand   IST (Published)

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

    1mg turns unicorn with $40M funding round led Tata Digital
    Tata-owned online healthtech platform 1mg has turned unicorn after raising about $40 million in a fresh round of funding led by Tata Digital.
    Tata 1mg's board passed a special resolution to allot 30,992 equity shares at an issue price of Rs 1,03,047 per share to raise Rs 319.4 crore or $40 million, regulatory filings sourced from Tofler showed.
    Tata Digital led the round and invested close to Rs 254 crore or about $32 million followed by KWE Beteiligungen AG, HBM Healthcare Investments, MAF Mauritius, MPOF Mauritius and individual investors Rubal Jain and Vardaan Sharma, the filing revealed.
    In 2021, 1mg was acquired by Tata and has clocked a revenue of Rs 316 crore in FY21 (2020-21) against Rs 369 crore in FY20 (2019-20). The firm’s losses have remained almost changed at Rs 314 crore in FY21 against Rs 318 crore in FY20, according to its regulatory filings.
    SoftBank plans $35M bet on GoMechanic: Report
    SoftBank Group is in talks to invest $35 million in Indian car service and repair firm GoMechanic, in what would be one of the Japanese investor's smallest bets in India by its Vision Fund, which typically signs bigger cheques, Reuters reported.
    Vision Fund's early-stage talks with GoMechanic are being held around a valuation of $600-700 million, with Malaysian sovereign fund Khazanah and existing investor Tiger Global also planning to invest in the $100 million funding round, the report added.
    SoftBank has been in discussions with GoMechanic for more than nine months and was initially uncomfortable with the Indian firm's valuation request of $1 billion, said the report.
    MSA Novo invests $15M in 6 Indian startups
    Multi-stage global venture capital firm MSA Novo has invested more than $15 million in six Indian startups and plans to further inject funds into the Indian startup ecosystem by 2023-end.
    The VC firm has made investments across MPL, Slice, Jar, AppsForBharat, Flint and Questbook, with a focus on early and growth-stage tech-enabled startups, a statement said.
    “We are incredibly bullish on investing in India. Of all emerging markets, it has the strongest fundamentals in the depth of its entrepreneur base, engineering talent, total addressable market, capital availability and public market maturity. We believe we are still in the early innings of evolution in the Indian technology market and we believe that we can be a high-value additive participant by bringing our global playbook, institutional best practices and connectivity to help Indian companies accelerate their growth,” said Ben Harburg, General Partner, MSA Novo.
    Apart from India, MSA Novo is also looking to invest in Indonesia, Vietnam and Singapore. The global venture capital firm has also set up ground operations in India with an office in Delhi, with Prakhar Khanduja joining them early this year to lead investments in the country.
    GroMo nets $11M from SIG Venture Capital and others in Series A round
    GroMo, a fintech platform for distribution of financial products, has secured $11 million in a Series A funding round led by SIG Venture Capital, the Asian venture capital arm of SIG, a global proprietary trading and private equity investment firm.
    The round also saw participation from other key investors including Y-Combinator, Das Capital, Goodwater Capital, Beyond Next Ventures, Soma Capital, Ace & Company and Hauz Khas Ventures.
    Angel investors including Kunal Shah (CRED), Niraj Singh (Spinny), Ramakant Sharma (Livspace), Alok Mittal (Indifi), Utsav Somani (iSeed, AngelList India), Ashish Sharma (Innoven), Abhishek Goyal (Tracxn), and Nitin Gupta (Uni Cards), also participated in the round.
    As per the company, the fresh capital will be used to scale-up hiring across senior management in technology, product, marketing, business, category management, and HR functions, with plans to double the headcount in the coming six to 12 months. It will also use the funding to enter new business partnerships, especially with BFSI players to help them expand their reach, the statement added.
    CashFlo secures Rs 70 Cr from General Catalyst and Elevation
    Finance automation and payments platform CashFlo has raised Rs 70 crore ($8.7M) in its second round of funding led by General Catalyst. Other investors, including existing Elevation Capital, also participated in the round.
    The fresh capital raised will be used in products and technology, among others, it said. This round of funding will allow the company to grow its product lines for the CFO function, invest in core technology and expand its category leadership in the vendor financing automation market in India, a statement said.
    The company said its flagship offering on dynamic discounting and vendor financing automation has grown 800 percent in the last one year, besides expansion of its network to over 50 supply chains, with a network of over 2,00,000 Tier-1 and Tier-2 suppliers and dealers.
    "Over the past three years, we have heavily invested in our product and technology capabilities to constantly stay ahead of the market. Today we are head and shoulders above the competition in terms of product and execution capabilities," said Ankur Bhageria, CEO at CashFlo.
    Suite42 gets $4.3M in seed round from Omnivore and Orios
    B2B food processing platform Suite42, has raised $4.3 million in a seed funding round co-led by Omnivore and Orios Venture Partners. The round also witnessed participation from Titan Capital, All In Capital, Pointone Capital, and prominent angel investors including Sujeet Kumar (Udaan).
    The firm will use the fresh capital for talent acquisition, developing the “Suite42 Standard” in the food processing ecosystem, launching raw material financing, and piloting cross border trade (exports). In the next 18 months, the startup also plans to work with various B2B clients including e-commerce, D2Cs, and FMCG brands, as well as 2,000 modern trade outlets across multiple cities, a statement said.
    The firm provides contract manufacturing solutions for food processing, serving diverse B2B clients across the FMCG, agribusiness, and grocery industries.
    Project Hero gets $3.2M in seed round from Ankur Capital, Omidyar
    Construction tech company Project Hero has raised $3.2 million in a seed funding round led by Ankur Capital and Omidyar Network India. Existing investor including Titan Capital among others, also participated in the round.
    The startup said it will use the fresh funds to scale up its technology, on-board more talent on the platform, and expand their market presence. In July last year, it had raised $450,000 from Titan Capital, Anupam Mittal and Varun Alagh.
    Currently, Project Hero claims to have 400,000 workers on the platform and placed over 3,000 workers on projects across various states.
    FinAGG raises $3M in Pre-Series A round from BLinC Invest
    FinAGG, a Noida-based fintech firm offering cashflow-based supply chain finance, has raised $3 million in a pre-series-A funding round, led by venture capital company BLinC Invest. Existing investor, Prime Venture Partners, also participated in this funding round.
    The company will utilise the fresh capital to launch new products, expand current products in new cities, augment lending partnerships, and invest in technology, the company said in a statement.
    “We hope to take advantage of their combined experience and unique partnership-led philosophy to create FinTech products that will fill the many gaps in MSME financing today and cater to the companies that comprise the backbone of the Indian economy,” said Nipun Kohli, Co-founder and CEO, FinAGG.
    FincFriends raises $1.1M in equity funding to accelerate growth
    Digital lending platform FincFriends has bagged $1.1 million in its third round of equity funding led by existing stakeholder, Digital Finance International (DFI).
    This new funding brings the total raised by the digital lending platform to $9.2 million, which includes its Series B round of $1.1 million in March 2022.
    The fresh capital will enable the firm to scale its business offerings, expand its geographical footprint to Tier 2 and 3 cities and strengthen its lending portfolio. The startup will also continue to invest in sales and marketing operations with an aim to extend its commercial reach to broaden its customer base, a statement said.
    “Over the last few months we have been investing in an innovative product portfolio, enhancing our business operations and processes, building a seasoned leadership team and implementing a customer-first culture to offer state-of-the-art solutions and superlative service to our customers. This investment will enable us to deliver on our promises and enhance our market position,” said Artem Andreev, Country Head, FincFriends.
    Better Capital backs Equip.co in $400,000 pre-seed round
    Skill-based hiring platform Equip.co has raised $400,000 in a pre-seed funding round led by Better Capital.
    The funds will be deployed towards hiring for product, engineering and marketing roles, and towards onboarding subject-matter experts who will help expand the scope of skills that are currently tested, a statement said.
    “As the name suggests, we want to equip recruiters with identifying great talent. Equip will not only help companies reduce the time and effort to hire, but also help them look beyond CVs and pedigree, and focus on candidates' skills," said Jayanth Neelakanta, Founder and CEO, Equip.co.
    Mumbai Angels invests undisclosed capital in Travel Buddy
    Traveltech startup Travel Buddy has bagged an undisclosed amount in a funding round led by Mumbai Angels.
    The firm plans to spend 55 percent of the raised funds on product development and technology improvements. It also aims to build a platform for 240 million users by 2025-26, a statement said.
    Travel Buddy claims to have a global community of over 1 million travel content creators and has enabled online shops for 25,000 travel providers.
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