Funds is the second most crucial doodah for any startup, after idea. The idea and effort of any individual or organization can be put into real implementation if it s supported by right amount of capital. Wiki defines funding as the act of providing resources, usually in form of money, or other values such as effort or time, for a project, a person, a business, or any other private or public institution. There is no doubt that money is one of the most significant tool driving the business worlds. In initial years startups faced lot of dolour to collect funds and establish themselves. It is not that the difficulties have vanished completely but the process and availability and willingness of investors and financiers has made the activity easier. Today investors see the impeccable ideas that young entrepreneurs exercise. The investments they make are based on various thought processes. It includes the effort of the startup team, their aim, motivation, and most importantly the cause and innovation. Startups in India have added up to the economy by providing jobs to innumerable individuals. So funds in every way help to accelerate the growth of our Country.
Since funds are so non-trivial entities, lets have a look at various forms of funds:
- Crowdfunding – It is the practice of funding a project or venture by raising many small amounts of money from a large number of people, typically via the Internet. This approach taps into the collective efforts of a large pool of individuals. Platforms like Kickstarter or Indiegogo are great examples of websites where you create a crowdfunding campaign. The crowdfunding model is based on three types of actors: the project initiator who proposes the idea and/or project to be funded; individuals or groups who support the idea; and a moderating organization (the “platform”) that brings the parties together to launch the idea. Typically, those seeking funds set up a profile of their project/startup on a website and then consumers/investors can read about the business and give money if they choose. There are three different types of crowdfunding: donation, debt and equity.
- Venture Capitalist – A venture capitalist is an investor who either provides capital to startup ventures or supports small companies that wish to expand but do not have access to equities markets. Venture capitalists look for a strong management team, a large potential market and a unique product or service with a strong competitive advantage. For many, a venture capitalist would be the ideal funding situation.
- Seed Funding – Seed funding is also known as seed money or seed capital. It is a form of security offering in which an investor invests capital in exchange for an equity stake in the company. The term seed suggests that this is a very early investment, meant to support the business until it can generate cash of its own or until it is ready for further investments. Seed capital often comes from the company founders’ personal assets or from friends and family. The amount of money is usually relatively small.
- Bridge Funding – A bridge loan is a type of short-term loan, typically taken out for a period of 2 weeks to 3 years pending the arrangement of larger or longer-term financing.According to investopedia it is a method of financing used by companies before their IPO, to obtain necessary cash for the maintenance of operations. Bridge financing is designed to cover expenses associated with the IPO and is typically short-term in nature.
- Angel Funding – An angel investor is an investor who provides financial backing for small startups or entrepreneurs. Angel investors are usually found among an entrepreneur’s family and friends. They are often retired entrepreneurs or executives, who can provide valuable management advice and important contacts. A few popular places to meet Angel Investors include the Small Business Development Centers, or SBA, and Gust.
Here are some amazing stories of Indian startups who in recent times have raised a huge funding from various sources.
- HealthifyMe – It is Bengaluru based startup. It made it to this list as it raised $6 million funding. The funds were a part of Series A funding round led by IDG Ventures India, Inventus Caital and Blume Ventures. The startup was founded in 2012 and is famous for calorie counter and weight loss app. It combines cloud-powered software, wearable devices and fitness experts to let users achieve their fitness goals.
- Zenify – It is a Bengaluru based startup. It made headlines as it raised a whooping amount of $900k funding. The funds were a part of Series A funding round from clutch of High Networth individuals. Zenify was established in 2012 by three IIT Madras graduates – Sudarshan Purohit, Ankur Agrawal and Kailash Rath. Zenify is a home rental platform in Bengaluru, Karnataka. It lets users search, visit and rent apartments.
- ShabdaNagari – This startup headquarters in Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh. It was founded by IIT Mumbai alumni – Nikhil Tiwari, Amitesh Mishra and Kalpnesh Gupta in January, 2015. It is a social media start up that caters to the niche domestic and international Hindi consuming audience. It lets users share their articles, pictures,videos on the website. The startup recently raised an undisclosed amount in bridge funding from ah! Ventures. It had earlier raised $200,000 from Kanpur Angels and other investors.
- BHIVE – BHIVE Coworking space in Bangalore, is a start-up ecosystem that provides affordable office spaces to businesses. From entrepreneurs to start-ups to freelancers, it offers a range of facilities that enable individuals and businesses to co-work, connect, collaborate, communicate and commercialize their ideas. It provides start-ups the opportunity to network, ideate, synergize and seek advice from in-house mentors, as well as each other. The startup which was launched in November 2014, has recently raised $1 million in a funding round led by Blume Ventures.
- Pianta – Bengaluru based home healthcare startup Pianta raised an undisclosed amount in seed funding from FreeCharge founders Kunal Shah and Sandeep Tondon. Founded in 2015, this startup connects users with home health care providers for services including nursing, lab sample collection, physiotherapy and consultation. It currently operates in Bengaluru, Chennai, Hyderabad, Gurgaon and Noida.
- T’pot Cafe – It is a Delhi-based startup, launched in 2013 by Robin Jha, Atit Verma and Asad. It is a food-tech startup focussed on serving chai-nashta segment. The startup currently runs 20 cafe outlets across Delhi and NCR. T’pot cafe raised an undisclosed amount of seed funding led by Ashish Gupta. He is founder and trustee of Ashoka University and co-founder of Evalueserve.
- Play Your Sport – Delhi-based app to discover sports and fitness enthusiasts nearby, Play Your Sport has raised an undisclosed amount of pre-Series A funding. The funding was led by by Ashish Gupta. He is founder and trustee of Ashoka University and co-founder of Evalueserve. Founded by Supriya Mamgain and Varoon Kapoor, the app lets users discover fitness centers or create sport events by finding like-minded people nearby.
- Bus Aggregator Limo – This Mumbai based startup on Wednesday raised $1 million in funding from Rainmaker Ventures. Founded in 2014 by Siddharth Sharma, Anshul Khandelwal and Vivek Choksi, Limo provides air-conditioned shuttle buses to office and back in Mumbai. It also provides services like Wi-Fi, app-enabled payments, flexible timings and live tracking of buses.
- Droom – Founded in April 2014 in Silicon Valley, droom is India’s first mobile marketplace to buy and sell new and used automobiles. It is a technology driven marketplace approach, where they enable transactions between two users by bringing transparency, building trust, and mitigating information asymmetry. It raised an undisclosed amount in its Series B round funding led by Singapore-based Beenext and Digital Garage of Japan.