Unconventional startups in India who got VC funding

These are some really unusual startups who stemmed in India and got venture capital funding due to their weird yet unique ideas!

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The digital age is upon us and we are leveraging its power in India almost to its full potential! Thanks to cheaper mobile devices, better access to Wi-Fi and the concept of the Internet of Things (IoT) slowly permeating into Indian culture, we are using myriads of apps available nowadays to help make our lives better.

Following the same principle, here are some unusual startups who came up with really cool ideas to tackle common problems in India and guess what? They got considerable VC funding too!

VC funding as per Wikipedia is described as – ‘Venture capital funds are investment funds that manage the money of investors who seek private equity stakes in startup and small- to medium-sized enterprises with strong growth potential.’

Let’s look at some of these startups and how they are helping make India better:

MrNeeds – Founded In 2016

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  • Category: Micro-needs delivery
  • Registered As: MrNeeds Delivery and Services Pvt. Ltd.
  • Founder(s): Hitashi Garg, Ravi Verma, Ravi Wadhwa & Yogesh Garg
  • Location: Noida
  • Funding Details: Raised close to $500K in a pre-Series ‘A’ funding from a consortium of investors including IT professional Umesh Arora. The capital is intended to be used to expand the brand’s operations to other parts of the Delhi-NCR region like Indirapuram, Gurugram, and

MrNeeds is an app-based daily-needs subscription-based delivery service that delivers up to 36,000 orders a month, servicing 9,000 families residing in high-rise complexes of Noida. Since they have a low per-delivery cost by delivering only to customers living in high-rise complexes, their model is achieving immense success in the Noida region.

InnerChef – Founded In 2015

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  • Category: Foodtech
  • Registered As: InnerChef Pvt. Ltd.
  • Founder(s): Rajesh Sawhney, Sanjeev Singhal, Bal Dighent
  • Location: Gurugram
  • Funding Details: Secured $2.5 Mn in 2016 from M&S Partners and Mistletoe. This is in addition to $1.66 Mn they had received in its Pre-Series ‘A ‘round of funding by Paytm’s founder Vijay Shekhar Sharma, Anupam Mittal and others.

InnerChef is a hyper-local online marketplace which offers its customers a myriad of ready-to-eat meals, detox cleanses, gourmet DIY recipe kits (InnerChef DIY gourmet), desserts (Indulge by InnerChef) and other healthy foods (InnerChef+) via their app or website.

The unique feature of this service is that many neighborhood bakeries and home bakers can put their products up for sale on the platform. The service currently caters to residents of Delhi-NCR, Hyderabad, Bangalore, and Mumbai.

Nestaway – Founded In 2015

Livemint.com
  • Category: Home Rentals
  • Registered As: Nestaway Technologies Pvt. Ltd.
  • Founder(s): Amarendra Sahu, Smruti Parida, Deepak Dhar, Jitendra Jagadev
  • Location: Bengaluru
  • Funding Details: The brand is currently in talks to raise a fresh capital of $50 Mn (likely from SIDBI Fund of Funds). They also have Ratan Tata as one of its key investors. Prior to this, they have raised $1 Mn in March 2015 from InMobi founder Naveen Tewari and IDG Ventures, $12 Mn in a funding round led by Flipkart and Tiger Global in July 2015 and $30 Mn Tiger Global, Apoletto Asia, IDG Ventures and Sujeet Kumar after that.

Nestaway is online home rental marketplace which provides homes to pre-verified tenants at affordable prices and also turns the unfurnished houses into fully-furnished and managed apartments.

It currently operates in Delhi-NCR, Hyderabad, Bengaluru, and Pune.

PopiCorn – Founded In 2016

VCCircle.com
  • Category: Ready-to-eat foods
  • Registered As: Timla Foods Pvt. Ltd.
  • Founder(s): Prashanth Gowriraju, Arun Sahlam, N V Prasad, Naveen Alzapur
  • Location: Mumbai
  • Funding Details: They have secured an undisclosed amount of seed funding in 2016 from Kae Capital

Popicorn is probably India’s first GMO-free, 100% natural and ready-to-eat whole-grain popcorn. It contains no artificial colors, preservatives or trans-fat. It can be bought online via BigBasket or the brand’s own website.

Clootrack – Founded In 2017

clootrack.com
  • Category: AI, Text Analysis
  • Registered As: Clootrack Software Labs Private Limited
  • Founder(s): Shameel Abdulla, Subbakrishna Rao
  • Location: Bengaluru
  • Funding Details: Undisclosed; disbursed by SIDBI under Fund of Funds

Clootrack is a market intelligence platform that helps various brands to identify in an adaptive manner by analyzing what customers want. This is done by analyzing their online conversations and their feedback regarding the particular brand.

These insights are then used by the brand to boost their metrics by up to 10X, developing newer ideas and reaching potential consumers in a more influential manner.

Azuro – Founded In 2015

Azuro.com
  • Category: Real Estate Management
  • Registered As: Fittr Technologies Pvt Ltd
  • Founder(s): Ayush Agrawal, Altaf Ahmad, Sudhanshu Mishra, Vishal Chauthmal, Sushant Kumar
  • Location: Mumbai
  • Funding Details: Raised seed capital in October 2016 from Kae Capital, White Unicorn Ventures and Mumbai Angels

Azuro helps property owners find tenants, does periodic inspections of the property and takes care of all furnishing, maintenance and tenant issues to provide a hassle-free experience of renting a property to someone.

This is a perfect idea because many landlords hold multiple properties and find it difficult to manage so many tenants in one go. Additionally, Azuro also provides house insurance as an added incentive.

 

These are just 5 among the thousands of startups who are shaping the India of tomorrow. Not only are they offering many hyper-local services which were unavailable to customers earlier, but are also doing so in a cost-effective manner!

Are you using the services of these startups? Let us know in the comments below.

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