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Funding and acquisitions in Indian startup this week [27 May-01 Jun]

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As many as 39 Indian startups raised around $387.23 million in funding this week. These deals count 13 growth-stage deals and 20 early-stage deals. Moreover, six early-stage startups kept their transaction details undisclosed.

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In the previous week, about 24 early and growth-stage startups cumulatively raised close to $444 million capital.

[Growth-stage deals]

Among the growth-stage deals, 13 startups raised $309.7 million in funding this week. Auto parts and powertrain controls manufacturing firm SEDEMAC led the list with its $100 million secondary and primary funding followed by B2B and retail outlets (D2R) firm in the construction material Infra.Market with $50 million, EV company Ather Energy with $34.5 million in debt and equity funding.

Commercial electric vehicle manufacturer Euler Motors, building materials firm RDC Concrete, pharmaceutical product development company Orbicular Pharmaceutical, and B2B delivery and shared mobility startup Zypp Electric are next on the list among others.

[Early-stage deals]

Subsequently, 20 early-stage startups secured funding worth $77.53 million during the week. D2C sports apparel maker Technosport spearheaded the list followed by fast fashion omnichannel ethnic wear brand Libas, digital lending and card management platform Vegapay, Commercial EV distribution and financing platform Turno, and robot automation solutions provider DiFACTO among others.

The list of early-stage startups also includes six startups that kept the funding amount undisclosed: Yali Aerospace, Solinas, TechEagle, Aprecomm, Devigere, and Kidbea

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 15 deals followed by Delhi-NCR, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Pune, Chennai, Jaipur, and Thanjavur.

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Segment-wise, e-commerce, fintech, and EV startups grabbed the top 3 spots with nine, six, and five deals respectively. This list was followed by foodtech, SaaS, agritech, cleantech, and, dronetech startups.

[Series-wise deals]

During the week, Seed funding deals led the list with 8 deals followed by 7 Series A and 6 Pre-Seed deals. Pre-Series A and Series B startups saw 5 and 3 deals, respectively while Debt, Series C, and Series B are next on the list among others.

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[Week-on-week funding trend]

On a weekly basis, startup funding shrank nearly 13% to $387 million as compared to around $444 million raised during the previous week.

The average funding in the last eight weeks stands at around $289 million with 28 deals per week.

[Key hirings and departure]

Among key hirings, Vikaram Agarwal has been appointed as COO by InCred, Paytm Insider appointed Varun Khare as COO, while Anil Mehta has been appointed as the Independent Director by Yubi (CredAvenue). Puneet Kumar also joined Nexus Venture Partners as a venture partner.

Meanwhile, Cashaa Founder Kumar Gaurav stepped down as CEO and Paytm’s CHRO Swati Rustagi reportedly quit the company and is likely to join Adobe.

[Fund launches]

The week also witnessed seven fund launches. 360 ONE Asset introduced a Rs 4,000 crore Secondaries Fund to invest in late-stage startups, while Avendus launched a Rs 3,000 crore fund for similar investments in financial services, technology, and healthcare. Sorin Investments closed its maiden fund at Rs 1,350 crore, focusing on tech.

RPSG Capital Ventures and Sauce VC raised Rs 550 crore and Rs 250 crore, respectively, for early-stage consumer ventures. Holani Consultants marked the first close of its maiden venture capital fund at Rs 184 crore. Additionally, the Massive Earth Foundation, in collaboration with UNEP, launched the fourth edition of the Low Carbon Earth Accelerator program.

[M&A]

Y Combinator-backed BNPL fintech startup BharatX has acquired Zenifi, a healthcare finance startup offering zero-cost and low-cost EMI solutions. Honasa Consumer Ltd, the parent company of brands like Mamaearth, the Derma Co, and BBLUNT, has acquired the assets of Thane-based skincare company CosmoGenesis Labs to enhance its R&D and manufacturing capabilities.

Additionally, Times Network has acquired Digit.in from 9.9 Group to expand its digital publishing portfolio and footprint in the technology and gaming sectors.

[ESOP buyback]

Enterprise SaaS firm AiDash has launched its first Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP) buyback program following its $58.5 million Series C funding round, bringing its total fundraising to $91.5 million. This buyback scheme targets full-time employees with over three years of tenure, allowing them to capitalize on the value of their vested shares.

[Potential market moves]

Atlys, an online visa application platform, is in early discussions to raise $15-18 million in a Series B round, a year after its Series A fundraise. Backers include Peak XV and others. Meanwhile, Bengaluru-based healthtech startup Medibuddy is raising $8.4 million in debt funding from investors like Innoven Capital and Alteria Capital.

Additionally, Amazon is reportedly close to acquiring MX Player from Times Internet. This marks Amazon’s second attempt at acquiring the video streaming platform, with a term sheet already offered. Previous talks in 2023 fell through, but the current negotiations are in the late stages.

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

[New launches]

▪️ Flipkart-owned Shopsy forays into kids’ space

▪️ Razorpay launches ‘Q-Zap’ to reduce billing time at offline stores

▪️ BluSmart rolls out an app to help users locate nearby EV charging stations

[Financial results this week]

▪️ Vedantu posts Rs 153 Cr revenue in FY23; cuts losses by 46%

▪️ Oxyzo posts Rs 903 Cr revenue and Rs 291 Cr PAT in FY24

▪️ Travel Boutique Online’s PAT crosses Rs 200 Cr in FY24

▪️ Oziva records flat growth under Hindustan Unilever in FY24

[News flash this week]

▪️ Karnataka HC maintains a 5% service charge cap on app-based autos

▪️ BharatPe and PhonePe settle all trademark disputes over the ‘Pe’ suffix

▪️ Zomato revives lending biz, in talks with NBFCs for merchant lending

▪️ Proptech firm Awfis’ stock list at a 14% premium

▪️ PhonePe ventures into secured lending space, partners with banks, NBFCs 

[Conclusion]

The weekly funding surged 85% to $444 million, driven mainly by Flipkart’s $350 million funding in its ongoing $1 billion fundraise. Additionally, the week saw the launch of five new funds: IVY Growth, Finvolve, ThinKuvate, Databricks Ventures, and Caret Capital.

Awfis Space Solutions debuted on the exchanges on Thursday, listing at Rs 435 per share on NSE, a 13.6% premium over its issue price of Rs 383. Before the listing, the company’s shares had a grey market premium (GMP) of Rs 125. The issue received a strong response from investors, with an overall subscription of over 100 times.

Zomato is in talks with several non-banking financial companies to offer working capital loans to its partner restaurants, marking a return to lending services. As an LSP (loan service provider), Zomato will facilitate loans from its partners to potential borrowers and manage the collection of repayments.

Meanwhile, PhonePe has introduced secured lending products on its platform in collaboration with banks, NBFCs, and other fintech firms. Customers can access lending solutions in six major categories through the PhonePe app. The company has partnered with 15 NBFCs and fintechs for this initiative.

Additionally, Classplus, an edtech SaaS startup based in Delhi NCR, has launched its first engineering college, Polaris School of Technology (PST), in Bengaluru. PST will offer a four-year BTech program focused on classroom learning and industry experience, providing students with access to top global tech companies for internships and exposure.

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