Funding and acquisitions in Indian startups this week [13-18 May]

During the week, as many as 26 Indian startups raised around $240 million in funding. These deals include 9 growth-stage deals and 15 early-stage deals. Meanwhile, two early-stage startups did not disclose the amount raised.

Last week, about 24 early and growth-stage startups collectively raised around $320 million capital.

[Growth-stage deals]

Among the growth-stage deals, 7 startups raised $207.2 million in funding this week. Microfinance firm Annapurna Finance led the list with $72 million followed by battery tech startup Battery Smart which scooped $45 million capital. Propelld which provides education loans to borrowers via online channels, ambulance service provider Red.Health (formerly StanPlus), and manufactures drones for applications in agriculture, defence, and enterprise sectors Dhaksha are next on the list with $25 million, $20 million, and $18 million, respectively.

Further, the list counts agritech robotics firm Niqo Robotics, online gold loan platform Rupeek, rooftop solar startup SolarSquare, and a provider of supply chain service 3SC also raised funding this week.

[Early-stage deals]

Subsequently, 15 early-stage startups scooped funding worth $32.5 million during the week. Domestic aggregator providing end-to-end cold-chain solutions Celcius Logistics spearheaded the list followed by mobility and energy solutions startup Matel, authentication and access management platform OTPless, marketing SaaS platform Highperformr.ai, and provider of AI-driven solutions for advanced analytics startup Stupa Sports.

Moreover, DrinkPrime, Raho Hospitality, InstaAstro, BimaPay, Infurnia, The Betel Leaf, and BEYOBO also raised funding during the period.

The list of early-stage startups also includes two startups that kept the funding amount undisclosed: Duro Green and Trezi

For more information, visit TheKredible.

[City and segment-wise deals]

In terms of the city-wise number of funding deals, Bengaluru-based startups led with 9 deals followed by Delhi-NCR, Chennai, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Ahmedabad, and Bhubaneswar among others.

Segment-wise, fintech startups grabbed the top spot with four deals followed by e-commerce startups. The list further counts SaaS, Supply chain, Agritech, and Aquatech startups among others.

[Series-wise deals]

During the week, Series B funding deals led the list with 6 deals followed by 5 Series A deals while, Pre-Series A, Seed, Angel, Pre-Series B, and Debt are next on the list among others.

[Week-on-week funding trend]

On a weekly basis, startup funding dropped 25% to $239.7 million as compared to around $320 million raised during the previous week.

The average funding in the last eight weeks stands at around $222 million with 26 deals per week.

[Key hirings and departure]

Among key hirings, ANI Technologies, the parent company of Ola, has appointed Ankush Aggarwal as the CEO of Ola Financial Services, while Meesho has added Surojit Chatterjee to its board as an independent director.

Meanwhile, Kartik Gupta, CFO of Ola, has resigned after seven months, amid the company’s restructuring ahead of its IPO. Additionally, Sandeep Kumar Barasia, executive director and chief business officer of Delhivery, has also tendered his resignation.

[Fund launches]

Early-stage accelerator fund 9Unicorns has rebranded to 100Unicorns and announced the launch of its second fund. Part of the Venture Catalysts Group, 100Unicorns has introduced the 100Unicorns Fund II, targeting a size of $200 million with an additional green-shoe option of $100 million.

[M&A]

Niyogin Fintech Ltd. has acquired Superscan, an AI-powered document imaging, automation, and fraud detection platform, from Orbo.ai. Superscan’s core intellectual properties include intelligent document processing, automation agents, and fraud detection tools.

[ESOPs]

B2B edtech company Classplus has announced stock appreciation rights (SARs) for its customers, vendors, and partners. Dubbed as ‘Gratitude SARs,’ the initiative aims to reward and show appreciation to content creators and educators who have helped shape Classplus. While Zomato announced fresh employee stock option (ESOP) options for its employees under the new plan: ESOP 2024. As per estimates, the newly added ESOP options are worth around Rs 3,780 crore (approximately $455 million).

Visit TheKredible to see series-wise deals along with amount breakup, complete details of fund launches, and more insights.

[New launches]

▪️ Ullu’s founder Vibhu Agarwal to launch a mythological OTT platform, Hari Om

[Financial results this week]

▪️ Wow! Momo crosses Rs 400 Cr revenue threshold in FY23

▪️ Infibeam Avenues posts Rs 727 Cr revenue and Rs 49 Cr profit in Q4 FY24

▪️ IPO-bound Awfis reports Rs 616 Cr income in first 9 months of FY24

▪️ Zomato posts Rs 175 Cr PAT in Q4 FY24, revenue grows 8.3%

▪ Info Edge crosses Rs 2,500 Cr revenue and Rs 500 Cr profit threshold in FY24

[News flash this week]

▪️ ZappFresh converts into a public company

▪️ Zomato surrenders payment aggregator and wallet license to RBI

▪️ Delhivery to start manufacturing drones via a new subsidiary

▪️ Zoho plans to manufacture compound semiconductors

▪️ Flipkart targets to shift domicile from Singapore to India

[Conclusion]

The weekly funding slipped 25% to $239.7 million. The week saw a new fund launch namely 100Unicorns (9Unicorns).

Ullu Digital’s founder and CEO Vibhu Agarwal is reportedly launching a new OTT platform, Hari Om, in June. Hari Om will feature ‘U’ rated content suitable for all age groups, including 20 mythological shows focused on Indian heritage, culture, and spirituality. The platform will offer both short and long-form content, as well as bhajans and animated mythology for younger viewers, aiming to attract kids, youth, and senior citizens.

Zoho is reportedly planning to enter the semiconductor market and has applied for approval under the Centre’s Production Linked Incentive (PLI) scheme. The bootstrapped SaaS unicorn estimates a $700 million investment for the chip fabrication plant. Zoho intends to manufacture compound semiconductors, which are used for specialized commercial applications. The proposal is currently under review by the IT ministry, which has requested more information about Zoho’s prospective customers.

E-commerce major Flipkart plans to shift its domicile from Singapore to India, following the trend of several late-stage companies. This move is linked to Flipkart’s upcoming initial public offering (IPO), as reported by ET. Walmart-controlled Flipkart will be the second group firm to shift domicile, following PhonePe, which fully separated from Flipkart Group in December 2022 and was the first to undergo a reverse flip.

Logistics unicorn Delhivery is setting up a wholly-owned subsidiary, Delhivery Robotics India, to manufacture drones and provide freight air transportation services. The subsidiary will offer Drone as a Service (DaaS) for shipment movement and remote sensing, manufacture and sell unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) globally, and provide UAV pilot training.

Meanwhile, Zomato has decided to voluntarily surrender its payment aggregator and wallet license to the Reserve Bank of India (RBI). The company disclosed in a filing that its subsidiary, Zomato Payments Private Limited (ZPPL), has chosen to surrender the certificate of authorization obtained from the RBI under the Payment and Settlements Systems Act 2007. ZPPL was incorporated in August 2021 to comply with RBI regulations for payment aggregator and payment gateway services, receiving RBI approval in January this year. Zomato also wrote down its Rs 39 crore investment in ZPPL, declaring it as an impairment loss. In May last year, Zomato collaborated with ICICI Bank to introduce its own UPI solution, Zomato UPI, to reduce reliance on third-party payment apps like Google Pay, Paytm, and PhonePe.

About Author

Send Suggestions or Tips