Karnataka-based Indian Ambience Vineyards that sells organic wine under the brand name Yana and Hyderabad-based EcoPaper, manufacturer of handmade paper products, have raised angel funding from Srini Chakwal.

This is the first time Chakwal, who is an angel investor himself and also happens to be the founder & managing director of Redclays Capital, is investing in Indian companies.

While the funds raised by the companies were not disclosed, it was learnt that Chakwal had acquired 10 per cent and 33.03 per cent equity in Indian Ambience Vineyards and EcoPaper, respectively.

“I am confident that we will be able to see these companies successfully market themselves globally and create an intangible brand value for themselves,” Chakwal told VCCircle.

The funding will come in handy for Indian Ambience Vineyards as the company will use the proceeds to improve organic wine farming, product development and targeted marketing. On the other hand, EcoPaper, which makes a variety of handmade paper products like diaries, gift bags, shopping bags, greeting cards, photo albums, drawing sheets and art stationery items, will use the monies raised for better marketing and branding.

Chakwal, it was learnt, will play a key role in restructuring and redefining the companies’ marketing and branding strategies.

Talking about his investments in niche companies, Chakwal said, “Terms like organic and eco-friendliness are talk of the town these days. They have niche markets – so they definitely have a lot of potential to grow.”

Established in 2004, EcoPaper was founded by B Uma Maheshwar Reddy and its manufacturing facility is located at Kollipara in Guntur district, Andhra Pradesh. The firm is committed to preserving nature and creating handmade products that involve the skills of local craftsmen.

Incorporated in June 2007, Indian Ambience Vineyards was set up by Shalini Sanjeev Wadikar and Baburao Sundappa Wadikar who are agriculturists and at present, own about 21 acres of land in Bidar district of Karnataka and 7 acres of land in Usmanabad district in Maharashtra. These vineyards strictly follow organic farming practices to ensure the production of chemical-free, fresh grapes. For the first two years, the promoters of the firm sold the produce to the erstwhile Sula Winery at Nasik. However, after Karnataka announced its grape processing and wine policy in 2007, the promoters decided to add value to their agricultural produce and entered the space of wine manufacturing themselves to take advantage of various government schemes.

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