Last year was a rollercoaster ride for the Indian startup ecosystem. Grand acquisitions, record deal value, and several new Unicorns have shown that startups in India have what it takes to succeed amidst political and economic turmoil. Disruptive and innovative ideas emerged as the real winners and startup funding reached record levels.
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The Indian startup ecosystem has been witnessing an unusual trend over the past couple of years. While the total number of deals has been gradually falling, the deal value has reached stratospheric levels. It means investors are investing a large amount of money but only in fewer well-established startups.
Learn about the best ways to secure capital from VC firms.
Here are some of the highest-funded Indian startups of 2019.
The Most-Funded Indian Startups Of 2019
The demonetization of 2016 has catapulted PayTm to become one of the most spectacular success stories ever. PayTm didn’t waste time to grab this opportunity with both hands, and go on to become the best solution to the problem of lack of cash.
PayTm received a funding of $1 billion last year from T Rowe Price – the famous asset manager. The funding raised its valuation from $10 Billion to $16 Billion.
Since its beginning as a digital payment solution, PayTm has evolved in many ways over the years. Now, it encompasses services as diverse as P2P payments, wealth management, payment bank, e-commerce, investments, and billing, among others. Future plans include providing digital lending services.
Cab-hailing services are quite common in India, and one company that’s mostly responsible for this phenomenon is Ola. With ambitious plans for going international, Ola is one of the most significant cab-hailing services in the world.
Started in 2010 by the founder Bhavish Agarwal, one of the most inspiring entrepreneurs in India, Ola’s services are available in over 20 international locations including New Zealand, Australia, and the UK.
Ola has plans to start a wide range of innovative services, including pop-up restaurants, self-driving car rentals, and cloud kitchens, to name a few. It is also planning to separate Ola money from its other business.
In 2019, Ola had successfully raised $300 Million from investors, including DIG investment, Hussam Khoury, and Samih Toukan. Ola is also planning to go public soon.
Delhivery is one of the most prominent names when it comes to logistics and delivery services in India. Founded by Sahil Barua, Mohit Random, Bhavesh Manglani, Suraj Saharan, and Kapil Bharti, Delhivery serves 17,500 pin codes across 2000 cities in India. Delhivery is a preferred delivery partner for major e-commerce companies like PayTm and Flipkart.
Canada Pension Plan Investment Board has invested $115 Mn in Delhivery last year. With SoftBank pumping more money into Delhivery, it now owns 25.72% stake Delhivery.
4. First Cry
Today’s parents want to shop for the latest and the greatest products for their babies, right from the comfort of their homes. First Cry is one of the leading startups in this segment. Supam Maheshwari and Amitava Saha founded First Cry back in the year 2010.
First Cry offers everything from toys to clothing to school items. It has also bought globally popular brands to Indian households like Hotwheels, Farlin, Nuby, Funskool, Pampers, Disney, and Medela, to name a few.
SoftBank has rightly recognized First Cry’s great potential for growth and pumped $395.7 Million in the series E funding round recently.
Grocery delivery services have brought a new level of ease and convenience to Indian consumers, especially in cities. Founded by Albinder Shines and Saurabh Kumar in 2013, Grofers is a trusted name in this space.
SoftBank has recently invested $150 Mn in Grofers. Other investments came from Capital investment LLC ($10 Mn), Times Group ($24 Mn), and Grofers International ($24 Mn). The plans include expansion to offline stores and collaborating with local Kirana stores to cover every nook and cranny of the country.
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