Weekly Recap: CommerceIQ, Oxyzo Transform Unicorns; Ola acquires Avail Finance

Business Today

India’s unicorn race continues its impressive pace with two start-ups hitting the coveted $1 billion valuation mark this week.

One of them was Oxyzo Financial Services, which marked the first-ever event of an Indian couple propelling their respective start-ups to unicorn status.

Oxyzo, the lending arm of industrial goods sourcing firm Ofbusiness, announced a $200 million Series A funding round at a $1 billion valuation.

Read also : CommerceIQ goes unicorn with $115 million fundraising led by SoftBank

The fundraising, its first major external funding round, was led by Tiger Global and AlphaWave Global, with participation from Norwest Venture Partners, Matrix Partners and Creation Investments.

Oxyzo, led by Ruchi Kalra, spun off from Ofbusiness, which became a unicorn last year. Kalra and her husband Asish Mohapatra are co-founders of OfBusiness.

Retail e-commerce management platform CommerceIQ closed a $115 million Series D funding round, bringing the company’s total valuation to over $1 billion.

The new funding follows CommerceIQ’s $60 million Series C funding round in June 2021. The round was led by SoftBank Vision Fund 2.

All of the company’s existing institutional investors – Insight Partners, Trinity Ventures, Shasta Ventures and Madrona Venture Group – participated in the round.

Read also : Oxyzo, the financial services arm of Ofbusiness, becomes a unicorn

The company said the new capital will be used to expand its business and bolster hiring globally, including in India, and to accelerate the development of its unified retail e-commerce management platform.

Managed accommodation provider Stanza Living, online beauty brand Plum and overseas-focused ed-tech platform Leverage Edu also raised major funding rounds this week.

The week was marked by two start-up acquisition agreements.

Ride-sharing giant Ola announced Thursday that it has reached an agreement to acquire Avail Finance for an undisclosed valuation.

Co-founded by Ola founder’s brother Bhavish Aggarwal, Ankush and Tushar Mehndiratta, Avail Finance was last valued at $38.5 million according to Traxcn.

It offers loans to blue collar workers. Business Today said the transaction may require an independent audit and subsequent board approval in accordance with corporate governance regulations.

The two brothers are directors of the company. Ola, with a 9% stake in the company, has common investors in Avail Finance, including Alpha Wave Global and Matrix Partners.

Read also : Ola’s acquisition of Avail Finance may need to go through an independent audit

Therefore, the share exchange agreement may require board approval and an audit since it falls within the scope of related party transactions. The company recently laid off a significant portion of its staff and currently operates with a small team of teachers led by Ankush Aggarwal.

Bizongo, a B2B commerce enablement platform, has announced the acquisition of Mumbai-based IoT solutions and real-time location services (RTLS) provider Clean Slate Technologies.

The company plans to integrate Clean Slate’s assets, property and people and tracking sensors to generate data and insights into plant operations.

Bizongo aims to equip more than 100 Indian factories with its cloud factory solutions. In January, the company acquired Hexa, a Bengaluru-based cloud platform for college internships.