Early-stage startups ZestIoT, Kiwi, others raise funding

By K Amoghavarsha

  • 03 May 2023
Early-stage startups ZestIoT, Kiwi, others raise funding
(L-R) Siddharth Mehta, Mohit Bedi and Anup Agrawal, co-founders of Kiwi | Credit: Kiwi

Aviation firm ZestIoT, fintech startup Kiwi, electric mobility software provider Kazam, solar installation supply chain platform Solar Ladder and e-commerce marketplace SoleSearch have secured early-stage funding, the companies said on Wednesday.

Internet of things-based aviation platform ZestIoT has raised $6.5 million (Rs 51 crore) in a Series A funding round led by IvyCap Ventures Pvt Ltd, with participation from Loyal VC. 


The Hyderabad-based company will use the funding for developing its technology stack, hiring talent and geographical expansion. 

Founded in 2016 by Amit Sukhija, , ZestIoT uses artificial intelligence and IoT to digitize last-mile operations, improve operational efficiencies, and introduce predictability in day-to-day operations. 

Ashish Wadhwani, co-founder and managing partner of IvyCap Ventures will be joining the board of ZestIoT on behalf of IvyCap Ventures.


"This new investment will help us in our growth in the aviation ecosystem. Additionally, we're extending our offering to the manufacturing industry, to produce products in a cost-effective manner while ensuring operational safety," said Sukhija.

Fintech startup Kiwi has raised $6 million (Rs 49.1 crore) in a pre-seed funding round from Nexus Venture Partners, Stellaris Venture Partners and a clutch of undisclosed angel investors.


Founded by Siddharth Mehta, Mohit Bedi and Anup Agrawal, Kiwi is a fintech startup that offers credit on UPI solutions for customers. Through its application, it aims to issue rupay cards in partnership with banks.

“Our vision is to enable access to credit on UPI for 1 million users over the next 18 months,” said Mehta.

The Mumbai-based startup’s application is expected to go live by mid-May 2023. 


Electric mobility software provider Kazam has secured $3.6 million (Rs 29.4 crore) in a funding round led by climate-tech-focused VC Avaana Capital. 

The round also saw participation from Third Derivative and existing investors Inflection Point Ventures and We Founder Circle.

The New Delhi-based startup will use the funds for product development and expansion.


Founded by Akshay Shekhar and Vaibhav Tyagi, Kazam is an internet-of-things (IoT) based platform that enables electric vehicles (EV) charging & swapping operators. The company has its presence across geographies such as the US, Europe and Asia Pacific. It plans to integrate 60,000 charging and swapping stations with its operating system in the next 14-15 months.

"The funds will be used to extend offerings of the platform to its existing customers by investing in technology and product teams," said Shekhar.

Solar Ladder 
Solar Ladder, a supply chain platform for solar installation companies, has raised $1.34 million (Rs 11 crore) in a seed funding round from Axilor Ventures, Titan Capital, DeVC, Stride Ventures, along with angel investors Varun Alagh (Mamaearth), Subin Mitra and Aditya Bandi (Groyyo) and Deepak Jain (Bain and Co.) among others.

The Mumbai-based startup plans to deploy the proceeds for product distribution and expansion.

Founded in 2021 by Manan Mehta, Abhishek Pillai, and Farhan Ahmed, Solar Ladder is a supply chain platform for solar installation companies. Its platform provides software-as-a-service (SaaS) tools, procurement, financing, and other services  
The company counts players like Mahindra Solarize and Fourth Partner Energy as part of its client portfolio. It claims to have profitability and was previously bootstrapped.

It has also received awards and grants from various organizations such as YCombinator Startup School, the London School of Economics, the Government of India and Facebook. 

E-commerce platform SoleSearch has raised $730,000 (Rs 6 crore) in a funding round from Venture Catalyst, Anthill Ventures and Cornerstone Sport LLP, along with undisclosed angel investors.  

The Gurugram-based startup will use the capital for online and offline expansion and hiring. It plans to open physical stores in Hyderabad and Mumbai in the next few months along with launching its mobile application.

Launched in 2021, SoleSearch is an e-commerce platform for limited edition sneakers, streetwear, accessories, and collectibles. It began as a community platform for trading sneakers and evolved into a platform for sneaker & street-culture enthusiasts to bid, buy and sell verified, limited edition products both online and offline.

“According to reports, the revenue generated in the streetwear segment in India reached $2.6 billion in 2022, with an anticipated annual growth rate of 11.58 percent. This signifies the market opportunity for SoleSearch in the streetwear industry” said Rannvijay Singha, co-founder and advisor, SoleSearch.

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