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Deals RoundUp: HelloDhobi, Swastika Company, Flipkart, Amazon India, Huhtamaki, Valpack Solutions, o3 Capital, LeEco, SheEO, Nazara Games, Moong Labs, Neuron, GoCoop and Saha Fund

GoCoop Solutions and Services Pvt. Ltd, which runs social marketplace for cooperative enterprises, has received investment worth $830,000 from former Infosys vice-chairman Kris Gopalakrishnan and Saha Fund.

On-demand Laundry Startup HelloDhobi Raises Angel Funding from Swastika Company

Pune-based HelloDhobi Dry-Cleaners Pvt. Ltd, which owns and operates on-demand laundry startup HelloDhobi, has raised an undisclosed amount in angel funding from Hong Kong-based investment firm Swastika Company Ltd and some Mumbai-based affluent individuals, as reported by TechCircle.

The company will use the funds to expand operations in Pune and hire staff across verticals. The funds raised in June.

HelloDhobi was founded in April 2015 by Verma, an alumus of Symbiosis Centre for Management Studies, and Kunal Sachanandani of Symbiosis International University.

Flipkart Laying Off atleast 700 Underperforming Employees

Flipkart is sacking at least 700 employees, or over 3 per cent of its workforce, as it looks to cut cost to compete with rivals like Amazon and Snapdeal.

Flipkart is asking "under-performing" employees to either resign or face the prospect of being sacked, as per Indian Express report.

The number of employees who may be handed pink slips could run as high as 1,000.

This is expected to "impact 1-2 per cent of the employee base" as the company wants to be a "lean organisation".

Amazon Launches Amazon Pantry Service in India

Amazon India has launched Amazon Pantry, a service that will offer grocery and household essentials in a day.

Amazon Pantry will be accessible to all customers in India, whereas globally, it is only available to Amazon Prime customers.

The products will include large packs of atta, rice, pulses, edible oils and other staples. Home deliveries and shipping orders in a day will cost INR 20.
Currently, Amazon Pantry is operating in Hyderabad, but it soon plans to expand its reach nationwide, reported ET.

Finnish Huhtamaki Buys 51% Stake in India’s Valpack Solutions

Huhtamaki, a Finland-headquartered global food packaging company, has acquired 51 per cent stake in Mumbai-based Valpack Solutions Pvt Ltd, a company engaged in food service packaging, for debt-free price of about €2 million ($2.2 million). The acquisition was done through Huhtamaki Finance Company II B.V., a group company of Huhtamaki Oyj, reported DealStreetAsia.

This is the Finnish firm’s second acquisition in the packaging space in India and its first in the food-related space. Huhtamaki had, in 2014, acquired Mumbai-based Positive Packaging for $336 million.

o3 Capital Plans to Raise $150M Fund Focused on Hospitality
Mid-market boutique investment banking firm o3 Capital is raising a $150 million hospitality-focused fund, as reported by LiveMint.

“The idea is to raise a $120-150 million fund that will be investing in hospitality businesses, largely acting as last-mile funding. We will be specifically looking at near-complete assets needing last-mile funding to become operational,” said Deepesh Garg, managing director at o3 Capital Global Advisory Pvt. Ltd, adding that the firm sees a huge opportunity in the space.

LeEco Partners with six Regional Retail Chains in India to Strengthen Its Offline Presence in India

Chinese Internet and technology conglomerate LeEco has forged partnerships with six regional retail chains in India to strengthen its offline presence across the country.

"This marks another milestone in our India journey that has been incredible so far. Our strategy to strengthen our offline business is a testimony to our commitment to the Indian market," Atul Jain, COO of Smart Electronics, LeEco India, in a statement.

"For this, we have tied up with some of the well-known names in offline retail across geographies and we will continue to add more partners as we go along," he added.

LeEco has partnered with retail chains like Sangeetha, Poorvika and zonal distributors like Shivalik, AppsYouNeed, Pearl Infotech and PCH to expand its retail network, reported Gadgets360.

Through these partnerships, the company will be able to expand its retail base to 2,000 outlets across 65 cities.

SheEO, Toronto Based Female Entrepreneur Support Organisation, Venturing into India

SheEO, a Toronto-based female entrepreneur support organisation, is venturing into India, roping in investors to fund startups run and owned by women. The model calls upon 1,000 women per city to commit $1,000 (Rs 67,000) each to provide low-interest loans to 10 women-led ventures that are selected by the 1,000 women. The ventures get loans and access to women's networks, buying power and expertise to expand. This model will be in 1,000 cities by 2020, as per reported by ET.

"The idea is to support under-supported and under-financed women entrepreneurs. In addition to the low-interest loan, the women get access to the 1,000 women network, expertise and their buying power to help grow their business," said Vicki Saunders, founder of SheEO, who is visiting Mumbai to talk to women investors from India who have expressed interest in the initiative.

Nazara Games and Moong Labs Partner to Launch a 4D Cricket Game

Mobile gaming companies Moong Labs and Nazara Games have partnered to launch a 4D cricket game featuring Virat Kohli that will be available in September, reported ET.

The game play which has been created by Moong Labs uses an artificial intelligence based system, creating a realistic simulation cricket game where the end player can experience playing like Virat Kohli.

Neuron Raises $200k in Angel Funding

Neuron, a machine learning platform for text analysis, has raised an angel round of $200,000 (approx.Rs 1.3 crore), led by Harvinder Bhatia, CFO Netmagic and founder of Radiowalla.

The money will be used for R&D in machine learning and Natural Language Processing and for hiring talent, as reported by ET.

"Neuron is a Natural Language Processing platform that provides API's that help analyse the overall sentiment of a statement, extract the most significant word in a document, help know the similarity/relatedness of two statements, understanding the context of documents and categorizing into topics," said Veer Mishra, CEO, Neuron.

Social Marketplace GoCoop Bags Funding from Kris Gopalakrishnan, Saha Fund

GoCoop Solutions and Services Pvt. Ltd, which runs social marketplace for cooperative enterprises, has received investment worth $830,000 from former Infosys vice-chairman Kris Gopalakrishnan and Saha Fund, reported TechCircle.

Launched in early 2012,’s or Global Collabration Platform for Cooperatives’ marketplace acts as an aggregator of listed enterprises. It is a social marketplace to buy and source handmade apparels, home furnishings, fabrics, crafts and more directly from weavers and artisans.

The company was founded by Siva Devireddy. An alumnus of Arizona State University, Devireddy had worked with Accenture and Exemplary Inc prior to starting up.

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