Startups Money

Mohandas Pai invests in product customisation platform Gingercrush

12 Nov, 2015

Gingercrush, an on-demand platform for customising licensed products, has secured an undisclosed amount in angel funding from TV Mohandas Pai's family office.

Pai, former CFO and director of Infosys, has also joined Gingercrush as advisor, the startup said in a statement. Pai will mentor the founding team and senior management to strengthen the organisational leadership.

"A big question in the future of brand value growth is how to engage the new generation of consumers that are coming of age," Pai said. "I think a product customisation platform like Gingercrush makes the relationship of the individual with the brand that much more intimate, and I believe this helps brands deliver new dimensions of affinity and helps the best brands to stand out."

Owned and operated by Swadesh Essfil Pvt Ltd, Gingercrush was founded by Rajvi Makol and Saumya Nidhi in January 2015.

It's an on-demand retail platform where consumers can buy or customise products such as T-shirts, mugs, mobile/tablet covers and mouse pads from a pool of branded licensed imagery to fit their personal style. Customers can choose from these images or create their own designs.

Mohandas Pai, who is chairman of venture capital firm Aarin Capital, and educational and training services provider Manipal Global Education Services, is an active angel investor with a portfolio of over a dozen startups, including self-drive car rental Zoomcar and fitness startup GetActive.

His latest investment was into LetsVenture, a Bangalore-based online deal making platform that connects startups with investors. Pai and Tata Sons chairman emeritus Ratan Tata were among the 18 investors who put an undisclosed amount in LetsVenture.

In September this year, Pai along with the co-founder and senior managing director of Helion Venture Partners Kanwaljit Singh and a few others made a seed investment of about $1 million (Rs 6.4 crore) in online meat ordering startup Licious.

Makol previously owned Swadesh Polymers, a manufacturing company of filler compounds and masterbatches and Spot Telecom, which was a distributor for BPL Mobile, Airtel and Pagelink in Mumbai. Nidhi was previously associated with Enterprise Nexus, Airtel Brand Shop and Tam Media before cofounding Swadesh Polymers with Makol.