Silicon Valley-based entrepreneurs Venky Harinarayan and Anand Rajaraman, who have sold a string of ventures to marquee global firms, have invested an undisclosed amount in Bangalore-based Urban Ladder Home Decor Solutions Pvt Ltd, which runs online furniture shop Urban Ladder.
The duo will join Ratan Tata, former chairman and currently chairman emeritus of Tata Sons, the holding arm of the multi-billion Tata conglomerate, who also made a personal investment in the e-commerce firm last year.
“The newly raised funds will be used to ramp up our technology platforms and work on pioneering solutions in the technology space,” Ashish Goel, CEO & co-founder, Urban Ladder told VCCircle.
Earlier this month, Urban Ladder said it raised $50 million in Series C round of funding led by Sequoia Capital and TR Capital with participation from existing investors Steadview Capital, SAIF Partners and Kalaari Capital.
“They have done fantastic work in technology and set high global benchmarks. It is great that they believe in the potential of the Indian e-commerce industry,” said Goel.
The two Stanford University computer science PhDs co-founded Junglee in 1996, a shopping comparison site that Amazon acquired two years later for $250 million. The site was launched in India in 2012, a year before Amazon took the wraps off its local marketplace.
The duo later worked with Amazon to help create its third-party marketplace, the concept underlying Amazon.com’s Mechanical Turk. Harinarayan and Rajaraman left Amazon in 2000 to found venture firm Cambrian Ventures, which invested in Yousendit, Mobissimo, and other tech companies with the backing of Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos and others.
They also made angel investment in Facebook in 2005.
Later they created Kosmix, a social media search engine that provided social media data and analysis for companies. Walmart acquired Kosmix in 2011, and the duo headed the WalmartLabs operations till June 2012.
(Edited by Joby Puthuparampil Johnson)