Daily funding roundup - September 8, 2015

Mitos Suson · September 8, 2015 · Short URL: https://vator.tv/n/3ffa

Smile Telecoms Holdings bagged $365M; BlaBlaCar secured $160M; SetPoint Medical raised $43M

  • YouthKiAwaaz, an online news and views platform, has raised angel funding of Rs 4 crore ($600,000) from Quintillion Media, the cross-platform digital content venture founded by Raghav Bahl and Ritu Kapur. The funds will be used by YouthKiAwaaz to expand its team and business model, while also boosting its technology. According to the founder, the website receives over a million readers a month and has contributions from over 30,000 writers from across India and the world. 

  • Eden, an on-demand tech help service launched out of Y Combinator, announced a new chunk of cash to be added to its previously announced (rolling) seed round. This brings Eden’s total funding to $3.3 million, with this most recent $2 million adding to the $1.3 million the company received in July. Eden is a service launched out of the most recent Y Combinator class that lets users order on-demand tech help, whether it be fixing a cracked phone screen, installing a television on a wall mount, or simply fixing a dysfunctional wireless router. Investors include SV Angel, Redpoint Ventures, Bessemer Venture Partners, Slow Ventures, Comcast Ventures, Index Ventures, Canvas Venture Fund and many more.

  • Based in Tel Aviv, TVibes has landed $1 million in seed funding from TV and movie producer Damien Collier and other private investors, which it plans to spend on enhancing the app’s user experience. TVibes is currently available only on iOS, but an Android release is planned in the next few months. The app isn’t currently disclosing its user numbers, but says it has seen strong growth since launching in July. TVibes is currently exploring several monetization models, including offering chancels for brands. 

  • French startup Azendoo just raised $1.5 million from TheFamily, Thibault Poutrel and Arnaud Vinciguerra. Since I last covered the startup, the product has changed quite a bit. Azendoo is now an internal collaboration platform for marketing teams. Azendoo now has 300,000 users and wants to quadruple that number in the next twelve months. Today’s funding round will let the company staff up its sales team and work on its mobile app. 

  • Sahayog Dairy, a Madhya Pradesh-based dairy startup, has scored Rs 11 crore ($1.6 million) in Series A round of funding from social venture capital investor Acumen. The firm will mainly use the money for the expansion of its milk chilling and processing plant in Dewas area in the state. The sector has attracted a lot of entrepreneurs in the past few years and many private ventures also received venture capital backing. 

  • LookLive announced a €2 million ($2.2 million) Series A funding led by Liberty Global Ventures and Volta Ventures. LookLive identifies items in TV shows and celebrity images, creating contextual shopping experiences for consumers, enhanced user engagement, and advanced advertising opportunities for brands and publishers. LookLive will use the new funding to accelerate platform development and partnerships with broadcast and consumer brands.

  • Social media marketing startup Stackla has secured a $3 million investment round, led by ASX-listed Bailador Technology Investments. Bailador poured $2.5 million into the company investment in Stackla, with the remainder of the round made up by earlier backers including startup agency and advisory Rampersand, and former ninemsn and Yahoo! Australia chief executive Tony Faure. Stackla is a social marketing platform that aggregates comments about a business and enables companies to harvest them for use in marketing.

  • Shots, a selfie app made famous by high-profile celebrity supporters like Justin Bieber, just raised another $4 million in funding led by DCM Ventures, adding on to its $8.5 million Series A from this past April. The company has raised $15.2 million to date.

  • Táximo just closed a $4.6 million round of investment, of which the main part is going to buy 80 taxis in Colombia, and the rest will be used to continue expanding the operation regionally. Táximo currently has a fleet of 1000 taxis operating throughout major Colombian cities and a net revenue run-rate of over 10 million. Táximo offers taxi owners and investors to fully operate their taxis, guaranteeing them a fixed monthly return. This frees taxi owners of the risk and hassle, while Táximo manages to reach economies of scale, and is able to invest in maintaining a professional fleet of cars and drivers. 

  • Trading Ticket, a startup based out of New York, wants to develop a suite of products that will help consumers become more active, and proactive, investors. It has closed a $4 million seed round as it gears up to officially launch its first product, a mobile-friendly securities trading tool called Trade ItWhile Trade It is just getting off the ground, the funding in Trading Ticket is notable in that it is coming from two key names in the fintech world: Valar Ventures, the investment fund started by PayPal co-founder and top VC Peter Thiel; and Citi Ventures, the investment arm of the Citi banking group.

  • Saucey, a Los Angeles, CA-based alcohol delivery platform, secured $4.5 million in seed funding. The round was led by Blumberg Capital with participation from Structure Capital, Altpoint Ventures, T5 Capital, HashTagOne, Scooter Braun, Phil MacIntyre, Nick and Joe Jonas, Terrence Jenkins of E! News and others. The company intends to use the funds to expand its customer base, introduce advanced purchasing tools for consumers and further their data/advertising capabilities with major alcohol brands.

  • Rhumbix, a San Francisco, CA-based provider of a mobile platform for the construction industry, raised $6.13 million in equity fundingAccording to a regulatory filing with the S.E.C., a total of 17 backers have invested in the offering. Led by Zachary Scheel and Drew DeWalt, Rhumbix is a mobile platform that captures field data in real-time from worker’s smartphones to increase construction productivity and safety, and reduce administrative burden.

  • Selecta Biosciences, Inc., a clinical stage biotechnology company developing a novel class of targeted antigen-specific immune therapies, announced today that it has completed a $38 million Series E equity financing. Proceeds from the financing will be used to advance multiple product candidates from Selecta’s Synthetic VaccineParticle (SVP) platform, which creates antigen-specific immunotherapeutics, with priority implementation of the clinical program for Selecta’s lead immunotherapeutic candidate, SEL-212, which is designed to be the first non-immunogenic biologic therapy for gout. The largest investor in this Series E round is OrbiMed, a leading institutional healthcare investor, and includes new investors, Sanofi-Genzyme BioVentures, Ridgeback Capital Management, Osage University Partners, AJU IB Investment and Sphera Global Health Care Fund, along with participation from all of Selecta’s existing investors.

  • SetPoint Medical, a biomedical technology company developing a bioelectronic therapy for inflammatory diseases, announced today that it has secured $15 million in an extension to its Series C equity financing, bringing the total raised in this round to $43 million. Proceeds from the financing will be used to support the company’s clinical trials to assess safety and efficacy of its bioelectronic therapy in rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and Crohn’s Disease, and to help advance the therapy toward commercialization. This Series C1 round includes the addition of a new, strategic investor, along with participation from SetPoint’s existing syndicate, including three existing strategic investors. In addition, Action Potential Venture Capital (APVC), a GSK fund that invests in companies pioneering bioelectronic medicines, increased its position in SetPoint (expanding the fund’s inaugural investment).

  • Zomato, an India-based restaurant discovery site, has closed $60 million in new funding as it looks to further its push into new verticals including food delivery, payments, table reservations and more. This latest round is lead by new investor Temasek and includes participation from existing backer Vy Capital. Zomato raised $50 million back in April (at a billion dollar-plus valuation, no less), and this latest infusion of money takes it to over $220 million from venture capital firms. (Sequoia India and Info Edge are its other shareholders.)

  • Ride-sharing startup BlaBlaCar has raised $160 million (£104 million) from Insight Venture PartnersThe Series D round of funding apparently values the business at $1.2 billion (£780 million). That means that BlaBlaCar is now a European "unicorn" (a startup valued above $1 billion). BlaBlaCar doesn't work like other ride-sharing services. It's designed for longer trips between cities, not for travel within them.

  • Smile Telecoms Holdings Ltd., which offers wireless Internet access in Nigeria, Tanzania and Uganda, raised $365 million in debt and equity financing to develop faster connections and extend broadband services to the Democratic Republic of Congo. South Africa’s Public Investment Corp., the continent’s largest money manager, invested $50 million in Smile, according to a statement from the company Tuesday. The balance came from a consortium of investors led by Cairo-based African Export-Import Bank, which included Lagos-based Diamond Bank Plc, Ecobank Nigeria Ltd. andStandard Chartered Plc. Smile is majority owned by Al Nahla Group of Saudi Arabia.

  • Uber founder Travis Kalanick told Chinese news website Sina.com that the company’s China entity, Uber China, has closed $1.2 billion as part of an ongoing fundraising round. Reuters had already caught wind of the deal at the end of August. It is also not immediately clear what the new funding puts Uber’s valuation at, which was most recently reported to be over $50 billion. 

  • China’s top transportation app startup, Didi Kuaidi (the new name for the merger between Didi Dache and Kuaidi Dache), has now raised US$3 billion as part of its latest funding round, according to sources talking to Reuters. The US$2 billion round was led by Capital International Private Equity Fund and Ping An Ventures, but there’s no word yet on who’s providing the additional cash for the taxi and car-hailing apps to battle Uber.

If you are interested in being included in our funding roundup, submit your press release or blog post about your financing round to mitos@vator.tv. 

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Mitos Suson

I produce Vator Events and enjoy the challenge. I am learning and growing a lot, being involved with Vator and loving every moment of it!

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