(Source: BloombergQuint)

Deal Street: Amazon Backs Digital Insurance Startup Acko

Five Indian startups raised nearly Rs 1,400 crore last week in angel, seed or venture capital funding last week.

E-commerce giant Amazon, besides ramping up its e-commerce play in India, is also backing domestic startups to build its consumer-focused payments business under Amazon Pay to take on Alibaba-backed Paytm and Flipkart’s PhonePe. It has now invested in online insurance startup Acko General Insurance in its third such investment in the Indian financial services space after BankBazaar and Capital Float.

Qtrove Gets Rs 350 Crore From Bennet, Coleman’s Springboard

Qtrove, a marketplace for natural eco-friendly handmade products, raised Rs 350 crore from Springboard Ventures, an investment arm of Bennett, Coleman & Co. Ltd.

The company said the funds will be used to bolster its efforts in marketing, customer acquisition, and vendor network through BCCL’s print, television, radio and digital media units.

Founded in 2016, Qtrove provides a platform for products such as bakery goods, honey and soaps. It procures and sells natural and non-mass-produced products from local sellers. The company expects to reach out to 3-5 million customers in the next five years from the current 100,000 users.

Amazon Leads $12-Million Funding Round Of Digital Insurance Startup Acko

More investments expected to flow in the Indian insurance sector as IRDAI approves guidelines for PE Funds to become promoters.  (Photographer: Akio Kon/Bloomberg)
More investments expected to flow in the Indian insurance sector as IRDAI approves guidelines for PE Funds to become promoters. (Photographer: Akio Kon/Bloomberg)

Online insurance startup Acko General Insurance raised Rs 80 crore (around $12 million) in a new round of funding led by e-commerce giant Amazon, a company statement said.

Ashish Dhawan, angel investor and founder of private equity fund ChrysCapital and existing investor Catamaran Ventures, and the family office of Infosys co-Founder NR Narayana Murthy also participated.

The fresh infusion takes the Mumbai-based insurer’s total external funding to nearly $42 million.

Acko operates as an independent general insurance company, offering its services through a digital platform. It provides personalised general and auto insurance products on its platform based on user behaviour.

“Acko is a young and nimble startup bringing technology and data-led innovation to the insurance sector to deliver a better insurance experience for customers,” said Amit Agarwal, senior vice president and country manager at Amazon India, in the statement.

Online Lending Startup CoinTribe raises $10 Million

CoinTribe, a credit-based lending marketplace for small and medium enterprises, raised Rs 67 crore (about $10 million) in a funding round led by India-centric mid-market private equity firm Sabre Partners.

Existing investor Puneet Dalmia, managing director of Dalmia Bharat Group, also participated in this round, the company said in a statement.

The Gurugram-based company said the funds will be used to enhance its proprietary online credit algorithm, develop products, and enter new markets. The current round takes the total fundraise by company to about $15 million.

The startup offers unsecured term- and working-capital financing to small businesses and does the risk assessment using a proprietary online lending algorithm. It connects banks and non-banking finance companies with borrowers, provides inputs for risk assessment, transaction fulfillment, repayment management, and borrower servicing.

Besides, it allows its partner financial institutions to lend on the platform. Axis Bank, Yes Bank, RBL Bank, DBS, IIFL, Clix Capital and SMC Capital, are some of its banking and non-banking financial company partners.

Others

Singapore government’s sovereign fund Temasek Holdings and American payments firm PayPal Holdings Inc. have picked up a minority stake in digital retail payments platform, Pine Labs for about $125 million, the company said in a statement.

Ready-to-eat and ready-to-cook packaged food products, Y-cook raised Rs 40 crore (around $5 million ) in a funding round led by Dutch impact fund Oikocredit and venture capital firm 021 Capital, backed by Flipkart Founder Binny Bansal. The company’s existing investor Omnivore Partners also participated, the company said in a statement.

Stellapps, an internet of things firm which operates in the dairy space, raised an undisclosed amount in fresh funding from led by IndusAge Partners along with the philanthropic Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Qualcomm Ventures--the investment arm of chip-maker Qualcomm Inc – and ABB Technology Ventures, the company said in a statement.

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