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Deal Roundup: Tech startup funding scales $500 mn, SoftBank accelerates in India

Deal Roundup: Tech startup funding scales $500 mn, SoftBank accelerates in India
Photo Credit: 123RF.com
4 Jun, 2021

The week saw Gurugram-based home services startup Urban Company cross the $1 billion valuation mark, making it the 14th technology startup to join the growing pool of India-born unicorns. It fetched a valuation of $2.1 billion following a $255 million investment from new investors Prosus Ventures, Dragoneer Investment Group and Wellington Management.  

Part of the round was reported earlier in April, based on filings with the Registrar of Companies. 

Taking into account the additional capital for Urban Company’s fundraise, nearly $510 million was raised across among 16 technology startups this week. The total number of deals this week stood at 24, of which eight did not disclose deal sizes. 

In terms of deals in the making, as SoftBank accelerates India investments from the $30 billion Vision Fund 2, OfBusiness is poised to raise nearly $150 million, while Walmart backed ecommerce giant Flipkart will see an infusion of nearly $700 million from the fund, ahead of its proposed initial public offering. 

Another SoftBank backed company, logistics provider Delhivery, was the largest receipent of capital this week when it raised $277 million led by Fidelity. The round which saw participation from GIC, Chimera Investment and Baillie Gifford, brings to close the company’s $300 million pre-IPO fundraise

Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund GIC also led a $50 million Series C round in logistics management platform Locus this week to fuel its expansion to North America. Another notable deal this week was the $30 million debt and equity round raised by rural fintech startup Jai Kisan led by Mirae Asset. Also, Tiger Global Management led a $15 million Series A round in health insurance company, Plum Benefits

Apart from those deals, the Thrasio-model of acquiring and scaling digital brands in India is gaining momentum in India. Thrasio is a US headquartered company valued at nearly $4 billion which acquires brands which primarily sell on Amazon and scales them. Former Myntra CEO Ananth Narayanan’s latest venture Mensa Brands, plans to do the same for digital brands across apparel, personal care and beauty. Mensa announced its $50 million Series A funding from Accel India, Norwest Venture Partners and FalconEdge Capital earlier this week. 

Staying with the Thrasio theme, this week, Equanimity Ventures also invested an undisclosed amount in Mumbai based startup Evenflow Brands.  

In fintech, consumer lending company KreditBee raised $8.2 million from India SME Investments while cross-border remittance company Fable Fintech raised a $5 million Series A round from Pentathlon Ventures and other angel investors. 

In mergers and acquisitions, Binny Bansal backed business services provider for startups, xto10x announced the acquisition of human resources technology company Dockabl for an undisclosed amount. Influencer marketing company, Chatterbox Technologies which operates Chtrbox, was also acquired by US and Canada based QYOU Media for business expansion in India.  

Apart from these, Tiger Global backed business-to-business marketplace for construction materials, Infra.Market announced the acquisition of equipment and construction services provider, EquipHunt, for an undisclosed sum. 

The week also saw micro venture capital firm Artha Venture Fund announce the final close of its maiden fund at $30 million. WEH Ventures also announced its second fund with a target corpus of $13.7 million, while Delhi based Egreens launched a Rs 15 crore fund to invest in early stage startups in the agritech space.