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Let’s Dive, Habitat raise capital; Yes Bank in talks to pick 9.99% stake in So Hum

Let’s Dive, Habitat raise capital; Yes Bank in talks to pick 9.99% stake in So Hum
Photo Credit: 123RF.com
1 Dec, 2020

Bengaluru-based Let’s Dive, which offers a remote employee management platform with features for building team culture, said on Tuesday that it has raised $1.7 million (Rs. 12.50 crore at current exchange rates) from Sequoia Capital India’s Surge.

The round also saw participation from Village Global and multiple angel investors, including AngelList India partner Utsav Somani; former Snapdeal CPO Anand Chandrasekaran; Remote.com CEO Job Van; MPL co-founder Sai Srinivas; OnDeck community, KhataBook co-founder Ravish Naresh; Facebook product lead Sunita Mohanty; former Slack director Cecilia Stallsmith; Silicon Valley Bank director Kamir Kothari and Contactually founder Zvi Band.

The startup said it plans to use the funding to build new experiences aimed at helping remote teams eliminate isolation and spread the product to thousands of companies all over the world. It also plans to build a cross-border product team using fresh capital.

Founded in July 2020 by Nitesh Agarwal and Om Prakash, Let’s Dive’s platform claims to bring remote teams together and tackle the problem of isolation by letting people socialize through a range of activities. Teams using the company’s platform can play games like Poker, Chess, Pictionary, and even host YouTube watch parties. 

Habitat raises $678,000 in seed funding

Apeirogon Technologies, the Delhi-based startup behind interactive social learning platform Habitat, announced it has raised $678,800 (Rs. 5 crore) in seed funding from Unitus Ventures and Whiteboard Capital.

The funding, the statement said, will be used for technology development, team strengthening, and building more regional languages into its platform for learners. Currently, it only supports Hindi and English.

Founded in 2016 by Rohit Pande and Shikhar Sachan, Habitat offers a social learning ecosystem for civil service aspirants by bringing together learners and mentors onto a collaborative platform, where they could exchange tips and ideas. 

“Habitat puts forth a communication-first pedagogy and centralises all learning activities like discussions, clearing doubts, study-plan iterations, on-demand lectures, notes-sharing and assessments. Think of an organised cluster of Whatsapp or Telegram groups with your chosen mentor creating lectures on the go with you. That’s the learning “habitat” for you. It’s 10 times better than the one-size-fits-all videos or live classes with no real-time feedback,” Pande said in the statement.

As of now, the application only serves groups preparing for information-heavy exams such as UPSC and PCS but the startup said it has plans to foray into concept-heavy exams like JEE and PMT in the near future.

Yes Bank in talks to pick up 9.99% stake in So Hum

So Hum Bharat Digital Payments, the payments industry-led entity that plans to apply for RBI’s New Umbrella Entity (NUE) license for setting up a retail payment network, has announced that it is in talks with Yes Bank for an equity investment.

According to a press statement from the newly-formed entity, Yes Bank is mulling the acquisition of 9.99% stake in So Hum. The bank plans to work towards its product and business strategy, with a focus on accelerating innovations, inclusion, and digital penetration in India. 

The deal is yet to be finalized. The news of discussions comes just a week after Infibeam Avenues picked up 33.33% stake in So Hum, joining in as the entity’s promoter and investor. 

So Hum was set up in May this year by Navin Surya, the Chairman Emeritus of Payments Council of India and Chairman of Fintech Convergence Council. 

Commenting on the ongoing discussions, Surya said, “Yes Bank believes in Fintech First strategy exactly like So Hum. I have always been impressed by Yes Bank’s success in the Fintech ecosystem driven by innovative and disruptive products and solutions.”

Prescinto raises seed funding from Venture Catalysts, others

Ahmedabad-based Prescinto Technologies, which provides a solar monitoring and analytics platform by the same name, said on Tuesday that it has raised an undisclosed sum in a seed round of funding.

The investment was led by Venture Catalysts, with participation from angel investors such as Rohit Chanana, the founder and managing partner at Sarcha Advisors, according to a statement. 

The names of other investors who participated in the round have not been disclosed.

Founded in 2016 by Puneet Singh Jaggi, Sanjay Bhasin, and Ram Menon, Prescinto’s AI (artificial intelligence)-powered SaaS (software as a service) platform delivers actionable intelligence to help companies focus on performance enhancement and increase generation and return on investment from their solar power plant.

The company claims that its patent-pending technology identifies the root cause of generation loss and then gives detailed insights to take effective action, resulting in 20x-50x RoI for plant owners and operators.

“In a very short duration, Prescinto has made its presence felt in the solar energy sector with its cutting-edge AI technology for real-time solar monitoring. The startup is a beautiful example of how technological advancements can be utilized to further improve a totally different sector dealing in sustainable practices,” Dr Apoorva Ranjan Sharma, co-founder and president at Venture Catalysts, said. 

Cred lands $80 million in a new round of funding

Mumbai-based Dreamplug Technologies, which owns and operates credit card payment platform Cred, has reportedly raised $80 million in a new round of funding.

The round was led by the startup’s existing investor DST Global, with participation from other returning investors Ribbit Capital, Sequoia Capital and Tiger Global Management, The Economic Times reported, citing people familiar with the development.

It gives the company a post-money valuation of $800 million, which is nearly the double of what was estimated when it had raised $120 million back in August 2019. 

Cred has not officially announced the funding yet.

Founded in 2018 by Freecharge co-founder Kunal Shah, the startup offers credit card owners a way to pay their monthly bills and earn Cred coins in return. These points can then be redeemed for cashbacks, lucky draws, and discounted purchases from partner brands of the company. 

9Unicorns leads pre-seed investment in NeoDocs

Mumbai-based health-tech startup NeoDocs Technologies has secured an undisclosed amount in pre-seed funding round from Venture Catalysts-run accelerator fund 9Unicorns.

The round, according to a statement from the VC fund, also saw participation from Dr Rohit Srivastava, head of the department of biosciences and biomedical engineering at IIT Bombay, and Hemanshu Jain, the CEO of Khyaal.

It said that the startup plans to deploy the capital to build a strong cross-functional team, strengthen its product, and conduct validation studies.

Founded in 2020 by Nikunj Malpani, Anurag Meena and Pratik Lodha, NeoDocs’ platform aims to enable self-diagnosis in healthcare through its proprietary AI engine, which interprets and simplifies medical reports and provides personalized health recommendations.

The startup also gives its users an option to get personalized interpretation and analysis by forwarding their medical reports on NeoDocs’ WhatsApp number.

Currently, NeoDocs only offers recommendations in Hindi and English. The company plans to add support for more vernacular languages in the future.