B2B e-com site OfBusiness raises $5M from Matrix, others

OfBusiness, an online marketplace for B2B commerce, has secured $5 million (Rs 34.2 crore) in Series A funding led by Matrix Partners India.

Angel investors Apoorva Patni, Bhavish Aggarwal, Pranay Chulet, Prashant Malik, Rohit MA and Sumesh Menon also participated in this round of funding, OfBusiness said in a statement.

The Gurgaon-based startup, which focuses on e-shopping of manufacturing and construction goods, will use the money raised to expand its team and build a technology platform for SMEs.

"SME’s in India are already using the internet (through Whatsapp) for information sharing and communication. We believe in the OfBusiness vision that these SMEs are ready to transact, beginning in an assisted manner for all their monthly purchases,” said Vikram Vaidyanathan, managing director, Matrix India.

OfBusiness, run by OFB Tech Pvt Ltd, was founded in 2015 by Asish Mohapatra (a former ITC and McKinsey executive), Bhuvan Gupta (earlier VP-engineering at Snapdeal and CTO of BSB portal), Ruchi Kalra (earlier a partner in McKinsey), Srinath Ramakkrushnan (earlier with ITC), Nitin Jain (former RBS executive) and Chandranshu (earlier with Centhrix Technologies and Hike Ezee).

“Given the absence of technology in this domain, we see a large scope for innovation to enable convenience and rapid scale for the SMEs and us,” Mohapatra said.

The company operates in 10 states across the country and is active across two verticals – construction and manufacturing. It also plans to offer healthcare products on its platform soon.

OfBusiness competes with Industrybuying.com, which had recently received an undisclosed amount in angel funding from family members of the Chennai-based Murugappa and TVS groups.

Another venture in this space is Tolexo.com. Run by Tolexo Online Pvt Ltd, Tolexo is part of IndiaMART InterMESH Ltd, which runs an online B2B platform for small and medium businesses connecting global buyers with suppliers under the brand IndiaMART. In an interview with Techcircle.in recently, Dinesh Agarwal, founder and CEO of Indiamart, claimed that the company did have some rounds of talks to acquire Industrybuying during its early days.

Globally, Amazon launched its wholesale e-commerce property AmazonSupply three years ago. This came two years after Alibaba launched a new site for B2B e-commerce under 1688.com.

OfBusiness would also compete with Bizongo and other B2B e-commerce marketplaces.

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