Endiya backs cell therapy startup Eyestem; Alok Mittal, Amit Ranjan, others bet on SalaryBox

Endiya backs cell therapy startup Eyestem; Alok Mittal, Amit Ranjan, others bet on SalaryBox
Photo Credit: 123RF.com
25 May, 2021

Bengaluru based cell therapy startup Eyestem Research has raised an undisclosed amount from early stage venture capital firm Endiya Partners. The funding will enable the startup to move a step closer to scaling its platform and creating affordable cell therapies essential for democratising access to a large section of humanity, it said in a statement. 

The investment will also help Eyestem to become one of the first few companies in the world to develop a treatment for Dry Age-related Macular Degeneration (Dry AMD), the leading cause of incurable blindness affecting almost 170 million people – mostly above 50 years of age – across the globe, it added. 

Founded by Jogin Desai, Rajani Battu and Dhruv Sareen, Eyestem has created a platform for allogeneic, scalable cell therapy. Eyecyte RPE, the company’s patented flagship product, is close to finding a treatment for Dry AMD and the company has two more products in the pipeline for similar incurable diseases affecting humanity.  

“Endiya is one of the more seasoned investors in the medical space in India and we are thrilled to have them on board. There are 1.5 to 4 crore people suffering from Dry Age-Related Macular Degeneration in India.  With our Eyecyte RPE cell-based therapy, we will soon be able to replace or repair damaged cells in the retina thereby helping address a previously incurable disease. I am looking forward to our clinical trials, scheduled towards early 2022, which will bring us closer to solving this global problem,” Desai said. 

Simple Energy

Bengaluru based EV startup Simple Energy appointed UiPath non-executive chairman Raghunath Subramanian as its newest board member. Subramanian has also invested an undisclosed sum in the startup. 

In his role as board member at Simple Energy, Subramanian will provide expertise in the strategic decision process of the company, the company said in a statement. Simple Energy is slated to launch its first flagship electric scooter on August 15, 2021, and is also in talks with other investors to raise a $15 million Series A round. 

Subramanian has invested in more than the eight deep-tech startups in his individual capacity. 


Scenes, a community platform by Avalon, has raised an undisclosed amount in a funding round, dubbed pre-Series A, from angels including Cred founder Kunal Shah, Unacademy founder Gaurav Munjal, Flipkart chief Kalyan Krishnamurthy, and Tanmay Bhat. 

Tanglin Ventures, Better Capital, Whiteboard Capital, iSeed Ventures and Blume Founders Fund participated in the round. 

The capital will be used for further product development and growth of the platform, the company said in a statement. 

Bengaluru based Scenes by Avalon, hosts voice and chat communities to meet and hangout with like-minded people. Founded in March 2021, the company claims to be expanding 70-80% per month for both DAUs (Daily Active Users) and MAUs (Monthly Active Users). 

Launched in 2018, Avalon is an educational community on social media with more than 2 lakh users across digital platforms and 50,000 on Discord (instant messaging and digital distribution platform designed for creating communities). They eventually decided to scale up and meet the needs of their audience by building Scenes, a platform that caters to communities of all shapes and sizes. Scenes is available on both iOS and Android.  


SalaryBox, a startup that simplifies the payroll process for small businesses, has raised an undisclosed amount in its pre-seed funding round. GSF Accelerator led the round, with the participation of marquee individual investors Alok Mittal, CEO of Indifi; Amit Ranjan, co-founder of SlideShare; Sumit Jain, co-founder of CommonFloor; and Surjendu Kuila, co-founder of Zopper. 

The startup said in a statement that it would use the capital to accelerate product development and drive customer acquisition. 

Owned and operated by Cresce Innovation Private Limited, SalaryBox was founded in 2020 by IIT Roorkee alumni Nikhil Goel and Peeyush Goyal. The company has built a mobile SaaS product that makes salary calculation and payments simple and convenient for small businesses. 

“Small businesses that employ blue-collar workers still resort to manual, paper-based payroll processing, which can be particularly difficult to track,” Goel said. “We need a technology solution that addresses the complexities of employee management, payroll, benefits, compliance, and more for a small business owner. This also helps blue-collar employees get a digital footprint of their payroll and employment details that they can easily share with financial institutions to avail loan and insurance products,” he added.