Cityfurnish raises funding from Gmail creator, YouTube co-founder; Twitter may back ShareChat

Cityfurnish raises funding from Gmail creator, YouTube co-founder; Twitter may back ShareChat
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7 Jun, 2019

Gurugram-based Magneto Home Pvt. Ltd, which owns and operates online furniture and appliances rental marketplace Cityfurnish, has raised $5 million (Rs 34.6 crore at current exchange rate) in its Series A round from Gmail founder Paul Buchheit, YouTube cofounder Steve Chen and others. Institutional investors Venture Highway, Soma Capital, Global Founders Capital, SCM Advisors and Boomerang Ventures also participated in the round.

Global Founders Capital is the venture capital (VC) arm of Rocket Internet, the German VC firm-cum-startup incubator that had stopped making fresh investments in India two years ago. 

Cityfurnish in a statement said that other high net-worth individuals and angel investors also participated in the round, who did not wish to be named. With the capital infusion, the company will enter newer categories. It already serves commercial and hospitality segments, apart from individual buyers, and plans to expand to 14 cities by 2022. Cityfurnish plans to launch a furniture subscription programme on a pay-as-you-go model. The funding will also be used for investment in brand, technology and expansion, said Saurabh Gupta, cofounder of Cityfurnish. 

Founded in 2015 by Neerav Jain and Gupta, Cityfurnish has a presence in Delhi-NCR, Mumbai, Bengaluru and Pune. The company had raised a seed round from cofounder of Citrus Pay, Jitendra Gupta. The firm was also a part of Y Combinator’s Summer 2019 batch and competes with the likes of Accel-backed Rentomojo and Lightbox-backed Furlenco and IvyCapital-backed GrabOnRent.

Twitter to invest in ShareChat

US-headquartered microblogging site Twitter is in talks to lead a $100 million (Rs 693 crore at current exchange rate) funding round in local language chat app ShareChat, reported The Economic Times. The round, which is likely to value ShareChat close to $650 million, will see participation from existing investors including Shunwei Capital, China’s Morningside Ventures and will onboard Hong Kong-headquartered HillHouse Capital.

This will be the first such investment by Twitter if the deal goes through as the platform looks at expanding to non-English speaking users. 

For ShareChat, the discussions come a year after it had raised $100 million from Shunwei and others at a valuation of $460 million. The report also said that ShareChat’s talks with China’s Tencent for the current round fell through. ShareChat has been struggling to match marketing dollars spent by ByteDance’s short-video app TikTok in India.