Deal Street: Byju’s, Shadowfax Led The Pack In Startup Fund Raising Last Week
Employees work in an office. (Photographer: Namas Bhojani/Bloomberg)

Deal Street: Byju’s, Shadowfax Led The Pack In Startup Fund Raising Last Week

It’s that time of the year when founders prefer to rejuvenate after working round-the-clock on their ventures throughout the year. However, the deal street remained abuzz with funding activity, as 12 startups raised around $40 million last week.

The total amount raised was half of what was reported the week before, which saw 14 startups raising a total of $84 million in funding.

Angel and seed funding dominated the startup funding activity last week.

World Bank Arm IFC Backs Byju's

Byju Raveendran, Founder & CEO of Byju’s. (Source: Byju’s)
Byju Raveendran, Founder & CEO of Byju’s. (Source: Byju’s)

Education technology startup Byju’s recently raised $15 million from World Bank arm International Finance Corp., the company said in a statement.

The funds will be used to accelerate the company’s expansion into smaller cities and towns, Founder and Chief Executive Officer Byju Raveendran told BloombergQuint.

Today, almost 70 percent of our users come from outside the top 10 cities. It is encouraging to see increased adoption from more than 1,700 towns and cities in the country, but there is still a long way to go before we call this a learning revolution. We are planning to add channel partners across the country.
Byju Raveendran, Founder and CEO, Byju’s

This funding round comes three months after the company raised $50 million from the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, a personal fund set up by Facebook Inc. founder Mark Zuckerberg and his wife Priscilla Chan, as well as existing investors such as Sequoia Capital, Belgian investment firm Sofina SA, Lightspeed Venture Partners and Times Internet Ltd.

The firm provides learning programmes for students of Classes VI to XII and preparation programmes for competitive examinations such as JEE, CAT, IAS, GRE and GMAT, among others.

Shadowfax Bags Series B Funding

Hyperlocal logistics startup ShadowFax raised $10 million (Rs 68 crore) in Series B funding from existing investor Eight Roads Ventures, an investment arm of Fidelity International Ltd., the company said in a statement.

Founded by Indian Institute of Technology graduates Abhishek Bansal and Vaibhav Khandelwal in May last year, the startup provides intra-city logistics services to neighborhood merchants, grocery shops, pharmacies and e-commerce clients.

It was set up in early 2015 as a food-only delivery player but diversified across multiple verticals. It completes about 30,000 deliveries a day in 10 cities.

The company now plans to add over 10 cities in the next 12 months.

NoBroker Raises $7.4 Million Led By Korea’s KTB Network

(Source: NoBroker)
(Source: NoBroker)

Bengaluru based peer-to-peer, broker-free listing portal for home rentals, NoBroker, raised $7.4 million (Rs 50 crore) as an extension of its Series B round, co-founder Amit Agarwal told BloombergQuint.

The objective is to use this fund and expand services to top six cities, including three cities in the north India, namely Delhi, Noida and Gurgaon, over the next couple of months.
Amit Agarwal, Co-founder, NoBroker

The company is also looking to expand operations in Hyderabad, Ahmedabad and Kolkata.

The funding round was led by South Korea's KTB Network while existing investors SAIF Partners, BEENEXT and Digital Garage, also participated in the round, taking the total amount raised to $17 million.

IIT alumni Akhil Gupta, Amit Agarwal and Saurabh Garg founded the property listing platform in 2013. The company has 15 lakh existing customers on the platform, and 1 lakh new customers get registered every month, across the four cities it currently operates in, Bengaluru, Mumbai, Chennai, and Pune, Agarwal said.

Zoomcar Mops Up Series B Funding

(Source: Zoomcar)
(Source: Zoomcar)

Bengaluru-based Zoomcar, which offers self-drive rental services raised additional funding from a Hong Kong-based venture capital firm Cyber Carrier CL. This was part of Zoomcar’s Series B funding.

The company had raised Rs 160 crore ($24 million) from Ford Smart Mobility LLC, and existing investors like Sequoia Capital, Empire Angel and Nokia Growth Partners in August this year.

Jessica Wong, the managing director of Cyber Carrier CL did not specify the exact amount, when contacted by BloombergQuint, but said it was just under $10 million, making it their “biggest investment made in India so far”.

The fact is that the the Chinese market is 5-6 years ahead of where India is and now we have access to that knowledge base and capital base, and we will be very well positioned as compared to the smaller competitors.
Greg Moran, Co-founder, Zoomcar

enKast Secures $2 Million From Ivy League Alumni Angel Network

Bengaluru-based Seamovation Labs which provides cloud-based customer relationship product, enKast, raised $2 million in Pre-Series A round of funding from Ivy League Alumni Angel Network, the company said in a statement.

The investment was led by Manish Maheshwari, chief executive at Network18 Digital and former head of the seller business at Flipkart.

Seamovation is a software and mobile app development company, delivering consulting, product development, and outsourcing solutions.

Discount App BlueBook Raises Seed Funding

(Source: BlueBook)
(Source: BlueBook)

Bangalore-based local deals and discount app, BlueBook raised $500,000 in seed funding led by Indian Angel Network. Fundraising platform, LetsVenture, and independent investors from Singapore and the U.S. also participated in the round, Varun Kumar Akula, co-founder of BlueBook told BloombergQuint

The proceeds will be used to consolidate the merchant and user base in Hyderabad, Bangalore and Gurgaon.

“A part of money will also be invested on the product and technology to offer deep customer analytics, loyalty solutions for merchants and unique payment solutions,” Akula said.

He added that the firm aims to be present in all major metros in the next few quarters.

Other Deals

Mumbai-based daily consumables startup Supr Daily raised an undisclosed amount of funding led by angel investors from Venture Catalysts such as Apoorv Ranjan Sharma, Anirudh Damani and Anil Jain, among other angel investors. The startup will use the fresh capital to scale up its pan-Mumbai operations in the next six months, the company told BloombergQuint.

Legal-tech startup MyAdvo that helps clients connect with lawyers raised an undisclosed amount of funding from angel investors led by Pradyumna Dalmia, co-founder of Calcutta Angels Network, and a few other investors through LetsVenture, a funding platform, the startup said in a statement.

Hyderabad based bike-sharing startup Getbike, raised $100,000 (around Rs 68 lakh) in angel funding from a group of investors, reported TechCircle. Vamshi Reddy B, angel investor and co-founder of Apalya Technologies and investor Venu Veeramaneni participated in the round.

Babycare products startup, Mamaearth raised an undisclosed amount in seed round of funding led by Fireside Ventures and some high networth individuals, it said in a statement.

Indore-based business-to-business (B2B) platform ShopKirana which connects individual retailers with suppliers, raised an undisclosed amount in Pre-Series A round from Japanese seed-stage investment firm Incubate Fund, the company said in a statement.

Chennai-based E-Vegetailing, which sells fresh vegetables procured directly from farmers raised Rs 1.1 crore ($162,000) from The Chennai Angels, it said in a statement. It aims to use the capital to expand its farmer network, increase procurement points and improve its logistics operations

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