Deals RoundUp - Rainmaker Ventures, YAAP, Piramal Books, Utoo Cabs, Housing.com, Mobikwik, Happiest Minds Technologies, TrulyMadly and HiGrit
On-demand legal services provider HiGrit Services Pvt. Ltd has raised an undisclosed amount in seed funding from two Chandigarh-based investors
Rainmaker Ventures Invests $5 M In Digital Content Service Provider YAAP
Rainmaker Ventures – Co-Founded by Industrialist Sudhir Menon and Digital Marketer Atul Hegde, announced that it has invested $5 million in YAAP – a super specialty digital content company.
Rainmaker Ventures with presence in India, USA, Brazil and Singapore is an early stage start-up fund of $50 million that was launched in December last year. Rainmaker Ventures identifies competent start-ups and not only invests seed-capital, but also, wholly mentors these establishments through the co-founders collective expertise of growing successful businesses in the past.
YAAP, focusses on the 3 digital content service lines of Design, Discovery and Distribution. In Content design the firm looks at branded content, digital show formats, syndication, brand and visual identity, in Content discovery it looks at influencer identification, outreach and empanelment and in Content distribution it looks at programmatic content placement, alliances and channel partnerships. The focus being creating and distributing engaging content for businesses to attract, retain and deliver customer satisfaction.
YAAP has a non CEO, Partner model where digital media professionals Nikhil Bapat & Manan Kapur have joined in as Partners in Mumbai & Gurgaon respectively. The company will use majority of the funds invested by Rainmaker Ventures for acquisitions in the Branding & Visual Identity space, Automated content distribution platforms & Content creation platforms. The funds would also be utilized for YAAP’s expansion plans in the Singapore & USA market where they plan to open offices by early next year.
Piramal Group’s Chairman Ajay Piramal Invests In Cab Aggregator UTOO
Chairman of the Piramal Group, Ajay Piramal has invested an undisclosed amount of funds in serial entrepreneur C Sivasankaran’s latest cab-aggregation startup Utoo Cabs, as quoted by TOI.
The technology venture has been initially backed by funding from his family and close friends. Utoo was soft launched last month in Chennai and will soon provide services in 8 cities.
“We will launch in other cities shortly. When I complete the series A funding, I expect a valuation of Rs 10,000 crore with one lakh pick-ups across 8 cities,” Sivasankaran. “I am now getting support from family and friends. I will announce similar investments soon,” he said, adding that “for now, we are not taking any investments from funds”.
Rajan Anandan Backs BOV Capital, a Rs 100 Cr Early-stage Fund for Sri Lanka Startups
Rajan Anandan, one of India's most prolific angel investors, is backing BOV Capital, which is launching its maiden investment vehicle, a Rs 100-crore early-stage fund that will invest in technology-focused startups from Sri Lanka.
"We think of BOV Capital as Sri Lanka's first ever VC firm. While the country does have a few late-stage investment funds, we will focus on startups that will build technology products and technology-enabled businesses that will expand regionally and globally," Anandan as reported by ET.
However, this is not the first early-stage investment venture set up by Anandan in his personal capacity. The angel investor, who is of Sri Lankan origin, has played a leading role in setting up Blue Ocean Capital, a seed-stage investment firm, and Venture Engine, an annual entrepreneurship programme.
Softbank-Backed Housing.com Plans To Raise More Funds
Softbank-backed real estate portal Housing.com is in the market again to raise more funds for which it has approached a few strategic investors, quoting Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Jason Kothari.
“We are looking to raise capital in a few months…’’ But he also added, “We are stable… and it isn’t an urgent need.”
In December, the real estate platform had secured $15 million in a fresh round of funding from Japan’s Softbank, its largest investor While Softbank is Housing.com’s largest investor, other investors in the startup include Nexus Venture Partners, DST Global LP, Falcon Edge Capital LP, Digital Nirvana Fund Co. Ltd, Qualcomm Ventures and Helion Venture Partners as quoted by DealStreetAsia.
Mobikwik Launches New App- Becomes India’s Lightest Mobile Wallet
MobiKwik, the largest mobile payments company in India with over 32 million users and a network of 100000 merchants, today announced a new app for Android, the most popular mobile operating platform in India. This launch makes MobiKwik the lightest mobile wallet app available in India, packed with features such as bus booking, recharge, utility bills payments etc. The application also allows users to access ongoing offers and locate nearby stores for offline payments with a tap. This launch is in line with the vision of the company to attain 150 million users by 2018.
"In addition to the new app launch, we aim to make our mobile wallet the gateway for Indian masses to access financial services such as insurance, credit and loans. This will create more stickiness for the users towards Mobikwik and will help increase per user transactions. Our vision is to have users pay, invest, borrow and save all using MobiKwik.” said Upasana Taku, Co-Founder, MobiKwik.
The app is powered by expert systems to enable it to throw up relevant offers depending on the users’ location. In addition, the company has introduced features such as - Search and Pay - allowing users to make transfers and payments to MobiKwik wallets, bank accounts and merchants faster without the need to manually input names or numbers.
Happiest Minds is in India’s Top 100 Best Companies to Work For List
Happiest Minds Technologies, a next generation Digital Transformation, Infrastructure and Security and Product Engineering Services Company, announced that they have been selected as one of the ‘Top 100 best companies to work for in India’. The study titled “India’s Best Companies to Work For 2016” was jointly commissioned by The Economic Times and the Great Place to Work® Institute.
This recognition was possible through the implementation of significant number of People centric Initiatives at Happiest Minds which are driven through unique platforms such as the Mindful Manager Program, iAppreciate, the 8Ws Holistic Wellness Programmes, Attrition Mitigation and Performance Enhancement Process (PEP), to name a few.
“Happiest Minds was established with a mission of ‘Happiest People. Happiest Customers’. Being recognized as one of India’s Best Companies to work for, is yet another recognition for our company. I would like to congratulate and thank my entire team. They made our mission statement and our company culture a success story today”, said Mr. Ashok Soota, Executive Chairman, Happiest Minds Technologies.
Happiest Minds received several recognitions this year, including more than 15 awards, in areas of Intellectual Property & Thought Leadership and High Revenue Growth. The company has received accolades from leading industry analysts such as Gartner, Forrester, Ovum, Zinnov, Nelson Hall for its disruptive tech focus in the chosen areas of expertise such as Retail, Advanced Analytics, Application Security, IoT, Cloud Security, Identity & Access Management, Software Product Engineering and R&D Engineering.
TrulyMadly Moves To Freemium Model- Launches Spark
TrulyMadly, India’s number one dating app for singles, today launched its first premium paid feature called ‘Spark’.
A Spark lets users express interest in a match by letting them add personalised messages when they like someone. By doing so, members can make their profile stand out and get noticed, thus dramatically increasing their chances of being ‘liked’ back.
Rahul Kumar, Co Founder of TrulyMadly says, “We constantly strive to base the TrulyMadly experience on compatibility, not just location.Our member feedback shows that conversation openers are often a make or break for most people and Spark is our way of ensuring that people get off to the right start.
Sparks can be purchased in app across various price points, starting at INR 99.
With Spark and its powerful tagline “Get Noticed. Be Heard.” TrulyMadly has entered the ‘freemium’ space, wherein app usage remains free but premium features can be purchased.
On-demand Legal Services Provider HiGrit Gets Seed Funding
On-demand legal services provider HiGrit Services Pvt. Ltd has raised an undisclosed amount in seed funding from two Chandigarh-based investors, as per VCCircle report.
Chandigarh based startup secured the funds from Ashish Mahajan and Sarvesh Sharma, co-owners of web design company Osvin Web Solutions Pvt Ltd.
HiGrit was founded last month by Ashish Bais and Manish Singh, it provides legal services to startups, entrepreneurs, small and medium-sized businesses and professionals through its online platform. Users also have the option to post their query and get it answered by a team of about 100 lawyers. It charges a commission of about 40% on the professional fee.
The firm plans to use the funds for product development. It is planning to launch an Android app by the end of July and start a calling facility for instant legal consultation.
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