Providential Advisory Services Pvt. Ltd, which runs mass market mutual fund investment platform Nivesh.com, has raised seed funding of Rs 3 crore (around $4,50,000) from online deal-making firm LetsVenture and a clutch of angel investors including Google India managing director Rajan Anandan and former Infosys global sales head Basab Pradhan.
The other angel investors include Vivek Khare, advisor, corporate development at Naukri.com; Debasish Hota, chief executive officer at CompuGain Corporation; and Bijoy George, partner at Full Circle Tech LLP.
Pune-based Windrose Capital, which invests in digital-first early- to mid-stage startups, also participated in the round.
“We are witnessing extremely good response from our target audience and working on expanding our geographical footprint,” Anurag Garg, founder and CEO of Nivesh.com, said in a statement.
He added that Nivesh.com will look at strengthening its distribution network and enhancing its technology platform to make it more intelligent.
Nivesh.com is an omnichannel platform that enables intelligent and automated mutual fund scheme selection, transaction and portfolio tracking. It mainly targets Tier-2 and Tier-3 cities.
The firm works with a network of partners across cities while customer on-boarding and transactions are done online. In line with its plans to tap the mass market of retail investors, the platform has ventured into other languages, starting with Hindi.
The startup claims to have customers across 200 cities and business partners in over 15 cities.
Nivesh.com, which launched operations in January last year, was founded in August 2016 by Garg and Sridhar Srinivasan.
Before starting Nivesh.com, Garg co-founded mutualfundsindia.com, which was acquired by rating agency ICRA. Srinivasan helmed the India unit of investment research platform Visible Alpha.
In May last year, Nivesh.com had raised an undisclosed amount in angel investment from VCCircle founder PV Sahad, Infosys' former head of investor relations Sandeep Shroff and Right Global Infosolutions CEO Rahul Gupta.
“Savings are moving to financial assets and the Indian market is massively under-penetrated,” said Vivek Khare, director-strategy at LetsVenture.”While a lot of current players are focused on already penetrated metros, Nivesh is putting an emphasis on the large markets outside of the big cities where investors need hand-holding.”
A number of startups, such as Amigobulls, Belita, Inkmonk, Ketto, PosterGully, iTraveller, Aureus Analytics and Testbook.com, have raised funding via LetsVenture. Over the past five years, the platform has helped more than 100 startups raise funding.
Deals in the space
Other startups offering wealth management services that have raised funds recently include OroWealth, which received $1.6 million (Rs 11 crore) in a Series A funding round last month led by US-based venture capital firm Powerhouse Ventures.
Chennai-based Kaleidofin raised $2.8 million (Rs 18 crore) in a seed round led by Omidyar Network in April.
Kaleidofin provides intuitive and tailored financial solutions to the informal sector, for which it has tied up with banks, non-banking financial companies and micro-finance institutions.
In March, Bengaluru-based online financial planning and investment platform Kuvera raised $250,000 (Rs 1.6 crore) in its second round of angel investment.
In February, Mumbai-based Fincash.com raised Rs 1 crore ($150,000) from a group of angel investors. The startup offers its users an online platform that helps investors transact as well as monitor their investments in mutual funds, wealth management products and other investments.
Other startups that have ventured into the online sale of financial products include Scripbox, Upwardly and RupeeVest.