TMT Exclusive: Tendulkar, Sindhu & Gopichand to back health-tech startup CallHealth By 11 September, 2017

CallHealth Services Pvt. Ltd, a Hyderabad-based healthcare services aggregator, is set to raise Rs 40 crore ($6.2 million) in a funding round likely to be led by former Indian cricketer Sachin Tendulkar.

The cricketing legend is expected to put in Rs 12 crore while India’s top female badminton player PV Sindhu and former badminton player Pullela Gopichand are likely to put in Rs 4 crore each, show the company’s filings with the Ministry of Corporate Affairs in June.

US- and Hyderabad-based IT services company Tetra Soft India Pvt. Ltd (Rs 8 crore) and Bijman Projects Pvt. Ltd (Rs 10 crore), among others, are also expected to participate in the round.

The company will raise this sum by allocating 80 lakh equity shares at Rs 50 each. Of this, the company has already received Rs 17 crore from Tetra Soft (Rs 8 crore), Bijman Projects (Rs 7 crore) and angel investors Khusboo Mundra and Sunanda Daga (Rs 1 crore each).

The proposed investment from Tendulkar, Sindhu and Gopichand is yet to come in, a company spokesperson said over the phone without elaborating on the timeline. Gopichand is an existing investor in the company.

“Our planned fundraise is intended to help us expand to other markets, increase our offerings, acquire customers as well as engage key brand ambassadors to help us achieve our business objectives,” Hari Thalapalli, CEO of CallHealth, said in an e-mailed response. “As part of that objective, we have been in conversation with different personalities from the media and sporting world, some of which have fructified, while others have not matured as planned.”

In July last year, the company had raised Rs 57.52 crore by allocating 23.01 lakh equity shares at Rs 250 apiece. The investors in that round included popular Telugu film actors Chiranjeevi Konidela, Nagarjuna Akkineni and Allu Arjun. Gopichand had also participated in this round.

CallHealth denied that the latest fundraise was at a lower valuation than before and said that the share price is lower in the new round because of a stock split.

“The news about a ‘down-round’ is erroneous and may have been perceived as such because of the stock-split and the resultant share price. It is pertinent to note that all investments so far have only been at an enhanced valuation,” chief financial officer Satish Kottakota said in an e-mailed response.

The company had earlier split its shares of Rs 10 face value into 10 shares of one rupee each. This means that, at a share price of Rs 50 each, its valuation has doubled from the July 2016 round.

The company's previous filings show it had raised Rs 160 crore in four rounds over 2015-16, from investors including drugmaker Sun Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd, Trevanion Pte Ltd, Perini Pte Ltd, Iquest Enterprises Pvt. Ltd and Telugu film actor Venkatesh Daggubati, among others.

Chief executive Thalapalli also said that CallHealth has raised about $35 million so far in its pursuit of building and testing the “world’s first integrated healthcare services platform that brings together 16 different offerings” that include doctor consultation, diagnostics, nursing and physiotherapy services, online pharmacy and health insurance – both for individual and corporate customers.

CallHealth was founded in 2013 by Sandhya Raju, daughter of Ramco Systems managing director and CEO PR Venketrama Raja. Sandhya is also the daughter-in-law of Ramalinga Raju, the former chairman and CEO of Satyam Computer Services who stepped down after admitting to large-scale manipulations of the company’s books.

CallHealth offers an array of healthcare services including doctor consultation, diagnostic tests, hospitalisation assistance, medicine delivery, and home-care services including nurses, physiotherapists and trained attendants.

The company is present in Delhi, apart from a dozen cities in Andhra Pradesh and Telengana, its website shows.

Quark Enterprises Pvt. Ltd is CallHealth's holding company, as per the filings. It also has subsidiaries, namely CallHealth Online Services Pvt. Ltd and CallHealth Insurance Broking Services Pvt. Ltd.

Thalapalli said the company has launched operations in Hyderabad, a hub, and eight towns around it. CallHealth has also recently launched its operations in the national capital region. “We will be launching additional services like blood bank and genome mapping in the days to come and expand further in other geographies,” he said.

CallHealth operates in a space that includes well-funded players like Practo, which has raised around $180 million, Health Care at Home ($40 million), NetMeds ($60 million), Portea ($45 million), 1mg ($36 million), Healthkart ($34.5 million) and Medwell Ventures ($34 million).

Earlier this month, Mfine, a yet-to-be-launched online doctor consultation platform, raised $1.5 million in its first round of external funding led by Stellaris Venture Partners.

Last month, healthcare service aggregator Click2Clinic raised $850,000 in seed funding from a group of angel investors in the US and Malaysia.

*This article has been modified to add the company's response.