Early-stage startups Aqex, TagZ, others raise funding

By K Amoghavarsha

  • 11 May 2023
Early-stage startups Aqex, TagZ, others raise funding
Surajit Chanda, director, Aqex Technologies India Pvt. Ltd

Cryptocurrency startup Aqex Technologies India, FMCG brand TagZ, IoT-based platform Doppelio, SaaS startup Shipturtle, drone technology startup Enercomp and shipping logistics startup ShipGlobal have raised early-stage funding, the companies said on Thursday.

Cryptocurrency platform Aqex Technologies India has struck an ad-for-equity deal worth $7.5 million (Rs 61 crore) with Hindustan Media Ventures, the investment arm of HT Media Ltd. 


Aqex plans to launch a crypto trading platform, Aquarius Exchange, in South Asia later this year.
“Association with a media conglomerate such as HT should aid in significant synergies in terms of our brand-building and awareness-creation endeavors,” said Surajit Chanda, director, Aqex Technologies India Pvt Ltd.  

The company has a technology partnership with Aquarius Financial Technologies UK, which is also a shareholder. Furthermore, Aqex has established a strategic partnership with CQG, which will provide the necessary infrastructure support for the exchange. 

(Disclaimer: VCCircle is a part of Mosaic Digital, owned by HT Media Ltd)


Potato chips brand TagZ Foods has raised $2 million (Rs 16.4 crore) in a pre-Series A funding round from a host of investors including 9 Unicorns, Dexter Angels, Agility Ventures, Venture Catalysts,  Klub, Indifi and angel investor Rannvijay Singha among others. 
The Bengaluru-based startup will use the funds for manufacturing capacity, expand to newer geographies, develop new products, improve its logistics network and technology stack. 
Founded in 2019 by Anish Basu Roy and Sagar Bhalotia, TagZ Foods manufactures potato chips, international gourmet dips and cookies. 
“We plan to double down on our efforts to grow 4X this year,” said Roy, founder and chief executive officer, TagZ, 
Prior to the current funding round, TagZ had raised a total of $1.2 million in seed funding from a group of undisclosed angel investors in 2020. The company was a participant in the show Shark Tank India’s first season and had raised undisclosed funding from Namita Thapar and Ashneer Grover

Internet of Things (IoT)-based platform Doppelio on Thursday said it has raised $1.2 million (around Rs 9.8 crore) in a pre-Series A funding round from Axilor Ventures and Mela Ventures.   
The fresh funds will be used for research and development and geographical expansion. 
Doppelio enables testing of IoT applications without dependence on physical devices. Its device virtualization, simulation and test automation capabilities enable clients to test with speed and reduce their dependence on field trials.  

“As connected products develop in the coming years, we expect Doppelio to become an important piece in the IoT ecosystem. This funding will aid our investments in the product and go-to-market.” said Gaurav Johri, co-founder and chief executive officer, Doppelio.


SaaS startup Shipturtle has raised $426,623 (Rs 3.5 crore) in a seed funding round led by Inflection Point Ventures. The round also saw participation from a host of undisclosed investors.  
The Ahmedabad-based startup aims to use the funding to develop its technology stack, product development and geographical expansion.  
Founded by Sharad Kabra, Shipturtle is a SaaS startup for building direct-to-consumer (D2C) brand partnerships and marketplaces and through its offering brands can cross-sell products on other brand websites. It also handles workflows for products, inventory, orders and payments. 
"With Shipturtle, any brand can offer other complimentary brands to their customers - increasing average order value (AOV), conversions and revenue, while lowering customer acquisition cost (CAC) and  all with less investment or risk,” said Kabra.

Drone technology startup Enercomp has raised $316,739 (Rs 2.6 crore) in a pre-series A funding round led by Bestvantage Investments. The round also saw participation from Ah! Ventures and Soonicorn amongst others. 
The funds will be used for research and development and to expand its manufacturing footprint. 
"The funding will help us to create solutions that address the needs of our customers," said Jatin Patel, co-founder, Enercomp.
Based out of Ahmedabad, Enercomp is a drone manufacturing, services and AI tech startup. Enercomp's drones have the capability to collect and analyze vast amounts of data thus providing valuable insights to customers and optimize operations. 
Shipping logistics startup ShipGlobal secured an undisclosed amount in a funding round from Ashneer Grover (BharatPe’s co-founder)
 Founded in 2022 by Aayush Anand Angad Arora Vaibhav Kapur, ShipGlobal is a logistics startup that offers cross-border shipping services across the globe. The startup counts Amazon, eBay, DHL, FedEx amongst others as part of its client portfolio. The company claims to be currently profitable. 
“It’s difficult to find bootstrapped companies grow 100X in 1 year in an ops business and be profitable. As India grows small and medium enterprises (SME) exports - this business has the potential to grow,” said Grover.


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