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Rockstud Capital invests in home automation startup Cubical Laboratories
(L-R) Abhishek Agarwal, Dhruv Ratra, Swati Vyas and Rockstud’s Gaurav Thakkar

Cubical Laboratories Pvt. Ltd, which operates an eponymous startup that provides home automation products, has raised funding from early-stage venture capital firm Rockstud Capital.

The New Delhi-based company said in a statement it raised the funding as part of a pre-Series A bridge round. It didn’t disclose the amount but said it secured the capital at a valuation of $11 million (Rs 78 crore).

The company will use the funds as working capital. The company provides internet-of-things-enabled products for homes such as lighting controllers, temperature and light sensors, gesture control and energy monitoring devices.

“The market opportunity is enormous but current players lack acceptability from distributors due to price and incomplete technology, and therefore scalability has been a challenge in this segment,” said Rockstud founder Abhishek Agarwal, who is also an angel investor.

Cubical Laboratories was founded in 2013 at the Indian Institute of Technology-Guwahati by Dhruv Ratra and Swati Vyas. According to VCCEdge, the data research arm of Mosaic Digital, the company reported a profit after tax of around Rs 2 crore on net sales of Rs 7.29 crore for the year through March 2018.

Rockstud Capital

The investment in Cubical Laboratories marks the second time Rockstud has committed funding to a startup in this financial year. Previously, in September, it led an investment round in Everest Fleet Pvt. Ltd. Rockstud, Artha Venture Fund and a few angel investors had invested $1.1 million in the Mumbai-based startup, which provides fleet management services to taxi aggregators such as Ola and Uber.

Rockstud was set up in 2018. It is a sector-agnostic fund that focusses on the pre-Series A funding stage.

Last year, VCCircle reported that Agarwal was launching a VC fund that would back both startups as well as listed companies. “We understand that we are a small fund, but basically we would be one of the unique funds investing in pure startups as well as equity markets,” Agarwal had said at the time.

Agarwal has made angel investments over the past four years in several startups including location-based analytics firm LogiNext Solution, retail pharmacy chain Wellness Forever, product recommendation platform Unbxd and specialised cuisine startup The Bohri Kitchen.

Funding deals in the IoT segment

The larger IoT segment has attracted interest from several investors in recent months, as more organisations across sectors look to automate their processes and increase productivity.

In October, WEGoT Utility Solutions Pvt. Ltd, which operates an IoT-based water management solutions startup, raised $2 million to strengthen its product offerings and technological infrastructure.

In June, SwitchOn, an industrial IoT platform secured $1 million in a seed funding round led by pi Ventures, a venture capital firm which focuses on deep-technology investments. The same month, industrial IoT startup Syook raised an undisclosed amount in funding from Inflection Point Ventures, an investment initiative floated by a group of chief financial officers and finance professionals from India’s startup ecosystem.

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