Delhi-based e-waste management startup Karma Recycling Pvt Ltd has raised an undisclosed amount from Infuse Ventures, an early-stage investment firm associated with IIM Ahmedabad’s tech incubator CIIE (Centre for Innovation Incubation and Entrepreneurship) and Low Carbon Enterprise Fund (LCEF), a fund managed by Environmental Resources Management Foundation, the company said in a filing.
The company will use the funding to develop technology and expand its consumer and retailer operations across the country.
Founded by Akshat Ghiya and Aamir Jariwala in 2013, Karma recycles both corporate and household e-waste. Ghiya holds a BA in Economics and International Relations from Northwestern University in the US. He has also founded Glazetech Industries, a manufacturer and supplier of green building materials and metal facade solutions. His partner Jariwala holds a degree in Industrial Engineering and Economics from Northwestern University. Prior to co-founding Karma, Jariwala served as head of corporate strategy at SPML Infra Ltd.
The firm segregates e-waste collected from corporates and households which are then repaired and refurbished. The refurbished devices are then resold in the second-hand market.
For households and individuals, the company offers an e-portal which allows them to trade in over 3,000 models of working and non-working smartphones, tablets or laptops.
It has tied up with multi-store retailers such as Sangeetha Mobiles, Bharti Retail, Apple authorized stores and Future Group to enable in store exchange, buyback and reverse logistics and claims to have recycled over 16,000 smartphones, tablets and laptops as of now.
"The aim is to extend the life of a mobile device as much as possible, and when it cannot be extended any further, to recycle it responsibly. We have re-distributed thousands of devices, mostly acquired from metros to smaller Indian towns and villages, empowering many who could not afford brand new devices and allowing them to enter the mobile economy," said Ghiya.
In 2013, Karma raised an undisclosed amount in seed funding from Rubal Jain, director - corporate strategy, at logistics services firm Safexpress and Rishabh Sethi, executive director of infrastructure development company SPML Infra.
Infuse Ventures supports seed- and early-stage enterprises across renewable energy, resource efficiency, waste, water and other sustainability-related areas.
Recently, it invested Rs 3.5 crore in Chennai-based Proklean Technologies Pvt Ltd.
Established in 2008, LCEF provides seed and early stage capital to companies operating in Africa, Latin America and Asia. It seeks to invest in technology and renewable energy and has a global network of 5,000 consultants across 150 offices in 50 countries.