US-based impact investment firm Gray Matter Capital has invested $150,000 (about Rs 1 crore at current exchange rates) in Hyderabad-based government jobs app MadGuy Labs, a company statement said. The impact investor made the investment under its edLABS initiative, an $8-million corpus aimed at early-stage enterprises in education.
MadGuy Labs offers mobile-based exam test preparation services for government jobs in four local languages including Kannada, Telugu, Marathi and Hindi, apart from English. The artificial intelligence-based platform had raised a seed round of $111,250 from Villgro Innovation Fund in May this year.
Run by MadCloud Technologies Pvt. Ltd, the startup was co-founded by IIT Roorkee alumnus Alok Katiyar, Sanjay Jagarwal and Vishal Meena in 2014. It started as a general knowledge content app and then later pivoted to its current offering.
“The complete opportunity path from the discovery of applicable government jobs to preparation via customised learning towards those multiple jobs on a basic smartphone that is affordable in vernacular got edLABS excited to invest. This is especially true to create more opportunities for women to access quality content in the comfort of their homes,” said Smita Sircar, innovations director at edLABS, in a statement.
Gray Matters Capital
The impact investment firm plans to invest about $40 million (about Rs 264 crore) until 2020 in India’s education and employability sector through various initiatives, its chief executive Ragini Chaudhary had told VCCircle in April this year.
Besides $8 million for its edLABS initiative, Gray Matters Capital has allocated over $16 million to set up new funds, $10 million for direct investments and $2 million for an education-focused startup accelerator.
In September 2018, edLABS, along with other investors, had funded Jaipur-based STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) solutions provider SRJNA).
In 2019, edLABS will focus on investing in skilling, employability and livelihood solutions towards reducing barriers for women and girls, the statement added.