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Deals RoundUp: ONGC, Kotak Mahindra Bank, 50K Ventures, Joolz, Knowlarity, NephroCare, ZiPi and Swan Angel Network

Indore-based ZiPi that was was launched in January 2016 by a 15-member team led by Sukrat Ray, Pranav Singhi, Sumay Dubey & Siddharth Ray, has raised an undisclosed amount of funding from Swan Angel Network.


ONGC Launches Rs 100 Cr Startup Fund to Ignite New Ideas

ONGC has launched a Rs 100 crore Start-up fund on its Diamond Jubilee year to foster, nurture and incubate new ideas related to oil and gas sector. The initiative, christened as ‘ONGC Start-up’, is in line with the Govt. of India’s initiative ‘Start-up India’.

As part of this initiative, ONGC will provide the entire support chain for start-ups including seed capital, hand-holding, mentoring, market linkage and follow-ups. The aim of ‘ONGC Start-up’ is to increase the contribution of fresh implementable ideas in the oil and gas sector. ONGC is setting up a dedicated website to take this initiative forward.

After launching this initiative on 14 August 2016 at Dehradun, ONGC CMD Mr. Dinesh K Sarraf, said that this initiative will promote entrepreneurship among the younger Indians by creating an ecosystem that is conducive for growth of Start-ups in the oil & gas sector, which has a huge potential for technology-enabled ideas.

He added that the Oil & Gas sector is contributing enormously to the growth of economy. Currently, the sector faces various critical challenges and new ideas are required to mitigate those challenges.

Kotak Mahindra Launches Innovation Lab In Bengaluru; Open to Investing in Startups

Kotak Mahindra Bank has launched an ‘Innovation Lab’ in Bengaluru that would majorly benefit startups under the fintech sector and would also be open to invest in startups.

"We started an 'Innovation Lab' recently which is right now a dedicated space from where we are partnering with startups in the fintech space to test concepts and launch them into commercial products," Kotak Bank's Chief Digital Officer Deepak Sharma told PTI.

He further added that Kotak Mahindra has put together a seven-member core team which is working with 7 startups in the Artificial Intelligence, Analytics, Biometric or Iris Scanning and Machine Learning space. While two startups in the cohort are from the US and Australia, and few are Bengaluru-based.

50K Ventures Launches Go-To-Market Accelerator In Hyderabad

Hyderabad-based 50K Ventures has launched a go-to-market accelerator. The accelerator was launched by Raju Reddy, angel investor and founder of Sierra Atlantic, based in Silicon Valley.

The focus of the 4-month-program will be on go-to market strategy and execution, business development and enterprise customer engagement, as reported by Inc42. The accelerator is looking to work with startups across domains such as payments, security and business interoperability which are working on making a seamless connected world a reality. The startups will be provided with facilities and resources. Post the completion of the program the startups also stand a chance to raise funds.

Mumbai Based Jewellery Marketplace Joolz Raises Rs 3.3 Cr in Pre Series A Round

Mumbai-based jewellery-focused community marketplace Joolz has raised Rs 3.3 crore (about $500,000) in a pre-Series-A round led by two prominent early-stage venture capital firms, Silicon Valley-based Powerhouse Ventures and Japan's M&S Partners.

The one-year-old company plans to use the proceeds primarily to boost operations, products, marketing and further building up its team, founder Arnaud Lorie told ET.

Other investors who participated in the round include Ah! Ventures; Deepak Kasthwal, the former finance head of ride-hailing app Ola; PKX Thomas, the former chief technology officer of online travel agency Cleartrip; and Mahesh Ahuja, director at Brittman.

Knowlarity in Talks to Raise up to $40M

Sequoia Capital-backed cloud telephony services provider Knowlarity Communications Pvt. Ltd is in talks to raise as much as $40 million (approximately Rs.270 crore), as reported by DealStreetAsia.

One of the investors they have held talks with is Sapphire Ventures, the venture capital arm of German enterprise software giant SAP SE. A large part of the new round will be funded by its existing investors Sequoia and Mayfield. The last fund-raising at Knowlarity happened in July 2014, when it raised $16 million from Sequoia and Mayfield Advisors. In 2012, Knowlarity had raised around Rs.34 crore from Sequoia.

NephroCare in Talks to Raise $15M

NephroCare Health Services Pvt. Ltd, which runs a chain of kidney care clinics under the NephroPlus brand, is in talks with potential investors to raise around Rs.100 crore to fund expansion plans, reported DealStreetAsia. The existing investors International Finance Corp. (IFC), an arm of the World Bank, and Bessemer Venture Partners will take part in the fresh round of fundraising.

NephroPlus raised $10 million (Rs.60 crore) in a Series B round from IFC and existing investor Bessemer in June 2014. Bessemer also invested $4.25 million (Rs.23 crore) in a Series A round in 2011. “Our plan is to double our dialysis network to 150 centres in next one year, and grow to 500 in coming four years,” said Vikram Vuppala, founder and chief executive of NephroPlus, which has 75 centres across 15 states.

Indore Based ZiPi Raises Funding from Swan Angel Network

Indore-based ZiPi that was was launched in January 2016 by a 15-member team led by Sukrat Ray, Pranav Singhi, Sumay Dubey & Siddharth Ray, has raised an undisclosed amount of funding from Swan Angel Network. The firm provides a chatbot platform to allow users to engage with local business and services.

The company plans to use the newly raised funding to accelerate sales and continue developing technology that securely connects businesses with their customer by means of bots and conversational interface.

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