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Bolo Indya, KIKO TV, Bombay Play secure early stage capital

Bolo Indya, KIKO TV, Bombay Play secure early stage capital
Photo Credit: Pixabay
7 Dec, 2020

Gurugram-based short infotainment video platform Bolo Indya raised $400,000 ( Rs. 2.95 crores at current exchange rates) in a round led by Inflection Point Ventures along with existing investors from Eagle10 Ventures. 

The company will use the fresh capital to develop personalisation and recommendation engines to further expand its flagship platform Bolo Meets.

With the latest round, the startup’s total funding is close to $1 million so far. 

The startup’s platform Bolo Meets lets content creators leverage their social capital across the user base of more than 6.5 million. Users can conduct micropayments to avail one to one and one to many live video sessions with them around their expertise area. 

The company claims that content creators on its platform are already earning up to Rs 60,000-70,000 per month, with more than 50,000 bookings since the launch of Bolo Meets. Top categories on the Bolo Meet platform include astrology, lifestyle, fitness, language learning, singing, dancing, standup comedy and instrument learning.

“Short videos in local languages are expected to see the demand of over 80 million users by 2022, just fourth to Youtube, payments and ecommerce. This is where Bolo Indya wants to bring in video commerce for personalized online services to build a product which adds contextual value to the time spent on internet by regional language users,” Varun Saxena, founder, Bolo Indya, said in a statement.

9Unicorns backs KIKO TV 

Smooth Tag Technologies run KIKO TV, an AI (artificial intelligence)-based live streaming ecommerce platform, has raised undisclosed seed investment in a round led by 9Unicorns. 

The round also saw participation of several angel investors including Vinayak Srivastava and Saket Dandotia (Co-founders– Toch), Sunil Kumar Singhvi (Managing Partner at Singhvi Heritage LLP), and Srinivas Kotta (Senior Technical role at Adobe).

“We believe 9Unicorns and Dr. Apoorva Ranjan Sharma are ideal investors and mentors for the long journey ahead for KIKO TV. We are very excited and enthusiastic about this partnership. KIKO will be using the funds for building and improving our technology and expanding our customer base,” Shivam Varshney, founder, KIKO TV said in a statement released on Monday.

Founded in 2020 by IIT Bombay alumni Varshney and Alok Chawla, the platform enables online retailers and influencers to create content for marketing, branding and sales while enabling a one-on-one live selling session with the potential buyers, creating a more authentic experience of the transaction. Apart from viewing, liking and sharing the videos, any user can become an influencer and sell their own product or brand instantly on the platform.

Bombay Play secures seed capital 

Bangalore-based live social gaming platform Bombay Play raised $1 million (Rs. 7.3 crores at current exchange rates) in a seed round led by the country’s first gaming and interactive media venture fund, Lumikai. 

Existing investors in Bombay Play include Playco and Leo Capital. 

Founded by Oliver Jones and Abhas Saroha, Bombay Play claims its first multiplayer game ‘Card Party’ has been downloaded more than 10 million times. 

The studio has now raised $2.5 million in seed financing, and will use the funds to accelerate product development on multiple live, social, multi-player card and strategy board games, while doubling down on its current early hits.

Jones previously led game design at Glu Mobile and Zynga, before co-founding Moonfrog Games, where he helped create one of India’s most successful card game, Teen Patti Gold. Abhas previously led engineering at Zynga, Moonfrog, and Makemytrip.com. The co-founders have worked together for nearly a decade.

Justin Waldron, co-founder of Zynga and Playco, which recently raised $100 million at a $1 billion Series A valuation has joined Bombay Play’s Board of directors. 

Veranda Learning Solutions buys coaching startup Chennai Race for Rs 100 crores

The Kalpathi Group-owned Veranda Learning Solutions announced the acquisition of Chennai Race, a coaching institute for Banking, SSC, and PSC exams in a deal valued Rs. 100 crores, which includes stock and earn out. A new brand, Veranda Race, has been created out of this acquisition.

Veranda Race will initially offer result oriented online training programs for Banking, Staff Selection Commission and TNPSC. By December next year, the startup plans to launch course content in 11 Indian languages.  

“We expect Veranda Race to grow significantly in the coming months and years with addition of more products and languages. Race is a great brand to bring under our newly launched venture, as it opens new possibilities in the core areas of our business. The acquisition of Race will bolster our offerings and will further define our position in the sector,” Suresh Kalpathi, CEO, Veranda Learning Solution said in a statement.

Bharath Seeman, promoter, Chennai Race & Head of Veranda Race, added, The Veranda Race programs are set for rollout nationally, in the coming months, targeting a revenue of INR 50 crores in the first year. By the end of 2021, our content will be available in 11 Indian languages and we would be training around 50,000 to 60,000 students across the country. We have priced our courses around INR 7500/- which includes course materials and mentoring support”. 

LEAD School acquires AI-powered gamified student assessment platform QuizNext

Mumbai-based LEAD School, an edtech startup operating in the K-12 space announced on Monday that it has acquired QuixNext, an AI-powered gamified student assessment and practice platform.

The acquisition will let LEAD School enhance its overall product offerings by integrating new features from QuizNext, which will help schools build their assessment needs. This will also involve getting students into a habit of practicing by gamifying elements and personalised recommendations.

The move follows LEAD School’s recent completion of a $28-million Series C funding round led by WestBridge Capital along with existing investor Elevar Equity.  

Currently, LEAD School Integrated System (IS) serves over 4 lakh students and 16,000 teachers through 1,000+ partner schools in 400+ cities across the country through a hybrid--online and offline model.