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ChrysCapital leads $30 mn Series D in co-working startup Awfis

ChrysCapital leads $30 mn Series D in co-working startup Awfis
Photo Credit: 123RF.com

Co-working space provider Awfis Space Solutions has raised $30 million (Rs 212 crore at current exchange rate) in its Series D round of funding, led by home-grown private equity investor ChrysCapital.

The round also saw participation from existing investors Sequoia India and The Three Sisters Institutional Office, the family office run by Radha, Raakhe and Roshini Rana Kapoor, the three daughters of Yes Bank founder Rana Kapoor.

The fresh capital infusion will be used to expand and add more co-working facilities across the country, the company said in a press statement.

It also plans to introduce new products and services besides establishing new micro markets.

“The additional capital raised will support us in expanding our footprint in India with over 400 centres and 200,000 seats over the next 36 months. Our focus is to fortify our base in tier-1 cities and enter new markets with expansion into tier-2 cities,” Awfis founder and chief executive officer Amit Ramani said.

Awfis was jointly incubated in April 2015 with a capital investment of $11 million by Ramani and The Three Sisters.

In April 2017, it raised $20 million from Sequoia in its Series B round.

In July 2018, Awfis raised $20 million in a Series C funding round from Sequoia Capital, Innoven Capital and The Three Sisters Institutional Office.

The company had received the first tranche of Rs 71.59 crore in August 2018 from Sequoia and DOIT Urban Ventures, according to media reports. It received the second tranche of this round in May ($3.6 million), which increased the company’s valuation to $100.72 million, according to TechCircle estimates based on its filings.

In May this year, the company said in its filings with the Registrar of Companies that it will be raising $13 million in a mix of equity and debt funding from Bisque and Link Investment Trust.

Awfis currently operates a network of 63 centres across nine cities. It claims to be housing a total member base of over 1,500 companies and more than 25,000 professionals. Its clientele includes Syngenta, Dun & Bradstreet, Duff & Phelps, Hinduja Global Services, Vodafone, Reliance, Hitachi and Zomato.

The company currently has a total real estate portfolio of about 2 million square feet across India.

In an interaction with TechCircle last year, Ramani said the company plans to expand to 11-12 million sq ft, which would roughly translate into two lakh seats, over the next four to five years.

In May, Awfis opened its largest centre in Bengaluru, its 11th facility in the city. Spread over 63,000 square feet, the facility can house 1,050 workstations and claims 80% occupancy from corporates and startups including Reliance Communications, Frontizo Business Services and Equal Experts.

“Co-working has changed the way commercial real estate business is conducted globally and has picked up a lot of steam in India. Awfis’ sustainable approach to business, superior performance and strong customer focus encouraged ChrysCapital to associate with them,” Kshitij Sheth, vice president, ChrysCapital, said.

Established in 1999, ChrysCapital is one of the leading investment firms in India, managing around $4 billion across eight funds.

Awfis competes with CoWrks, GoWork,  99Springboard, SoftBank-backed WeWork and Innov8, which was acquired by OYO recently to launch its co-working platform.

Gurugram-based co-working spaces provider GoWork raised $53 million (around Rs 374.55 crore at the current exchange rate) as debt from a private fund managed by the world’s largest asset management company BlackRock and the special situations group of CLSA Capital Partners this week.

Earlier this year, it was reported that the India arm of Cowrks was in talks to raise $350 million from a clutch of investors in what could be the first round of external funding for the company.

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