Drone maker ideaForge raises $2 mn from BlackSoil
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Mumbai headquartered drone startup ideaForge Technology has raised $2 million (about Rs 15 crore) from venture debt and banking financial company (NBFC) BlackSoil.

The startup has so far raised around $15 million from US-based WRVI Capital, Qualcomm and Infosys, according to VCCEdge,  

Last month, ideaForge  raised $1 million from IT major Infosys. Recently, it received a $20 million order from the Indian Army for its SWITCH UAVs. 

SWITCH is a vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) UAV with advanced capabilities of operating at high altitudes and difficult climatic conditions for day and night surveillance.

The fresh funds will be used to meet the working capital requirements of ideaForge, according to a statement.

"The funds, along with recent fundraise from Infosys and other investors will support ideaForge in the execution of our burgeoning order book, and we hope to build on this relationship and catapult the company into the next phase of growth," Ankit Mehta, co-founder, and CEO of ideaForge said.

Founded by Mehta, Rahul Singh, Ashish Bhat, and Vipul Joshi in 2007, ideaForge serves a number of homeland and security agencies in the country and has its product portfolio of drones that have been developed keeping in mind the use cases relevant to India.

The company claims to have a range of customisable products for various applications and it has applied for more than 20 patents in the Indian and International markets. Since inception, it has deployed more than 1,000 drones.

 “We believe the new Indian Army contract is just a beginning for large-scale adoption of UAVs across security, surveillance, mapping for Defence, Industrial and Agricultural applications in India. Covid has also accelerated the adoption and use of drones for various new use cases in urban areas,” Ankur Bansal, director at BlackSoil Capital said.

BlackSoil’s alternative credit platform has concluded over 50 debt transactions to VC-backed growth companies by deploying more than Rs 500 crore in the past few years. Its past deals include hospitality major OYO, used cars platform Spinny, beauty products platform Purplle, rise hailing startup Vogo, logistics company Letstransport and B2B ecommerce platform Industrybuying and others.

BlackSoil recently announced the first close of its maiden secured credit fund at $14.7 million (Rs 110 crore).

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