The first quarter of the calendar year remained bullish for the startup ecosystem with the sector raising over USD 1.8 billion funding. This is a whopping 80 percent growth as compared to the corresponding quarter of the previous year when the sector raised USD 982 million, according to Tracxn data exclusively shared with Moneycontrol.
This excludes debt and grants given to the startups and here Tracxn has taken into account all the deals upwards of USD 5 million.
The development was led by big-ticket funding raised by companies such as BigBasket, Zomato and Swiggy.
While BigBasket raised USD 300 million in a Series E funding round led by Alibaba Group Holding, Zomato raised USD 200 million from Ant Financial, the payments affiliate of Chinese e-commerce firm Alibaba.
Swiggy on-the-other-hand raised USD 100 million from existing investor Naspers, among others. This was also the food-tech firm’s one of the biggest funding rounds so far.
Lending as a sector too saw exponential traction with small and medium enterprise (SME) lending startup Lendingkart raising USD 87 million in equity financing.
Much like the last year, the consumer segment attracted the majority of the capital. Across 69 rounds, consumer companies raised about USD 1 billion. During the January-March quarter of the previous year, this segment raised USD 546 million.
Enterprise applications was the second largest sector in terms of funding with USD 355 million raised. Last year, the sector had raised USD 233 million.
The number of funding rounds, however, reduced to 205 during January-March this year as compared to the year before which stood at 270. This signals maturing of the ecosystem with the more big-ticket investments happening.
Going forward, the sector is expected to witness major developments with companies such as Flipkart, Swiggy and Zomato in talks with several players to raise huge rounds.
Flipkart is in talks with a US-based retail giant to sell a majority stake even as reports of Amazon’s interest in the domestic rival circulate.