Ed-tech startup Smartivity Labs Pvt. Ltd, which deploys augmented reality and robotics for kids learning projects, has raised $1 million (around Rs 6.7 crore) in pre-Series A funding led by its existing investor S Chand & Co. Pvt. Ltd and early-stage investment firm AdvantEdge Partners.
The round also saw participation from Singapore-based fund CFG Offshore Holdings, US-based fund Tandem Capital and a clutch of individual investors.
“Smartivity started with DIY (do-it-yourself) activities for parents and kids, then entered the augmented reality space, and is also working on puzzles to provide interactive learning to kids. Now, with the new funds we will get into Internet of Things (IoT)-enabled toys and robot-led learning for kids, which are still at the conceptualising stage,” Apporv Gupta, co-founder, told VCCircle.
Smartivity would use the money raised to expand its team and its product portfolio in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) and augmented reality.
The fund raise was first reported by The Economic Times.
IIT-Delhi alumni Apporv Gupta, Ashwini Kumar, Rajat Jain and Tushar Amin started Smartivity in January 2015. Kumar, Gupta and Jain had earlier founded a startup called Yoohoobox, which offered art and craft projects on a monthly subscription format. Gupta was employed with Deloitte before starting Smartivity, while Amin worked with GQ India.
Smartivity had last year secured seed funding of $200,000 from educational textbook publisher S Chand & Co.
Founded in 1939 by Shyam Lal Gupta, S Chand Group is now owned and managed by Himanshu Gupta and Dinesh Kumar Jhunjhnuwala and their families. S Chand had raised nearly Rs 179 crore ($27 million) from International Finance Corporation, the private-sector investment arm of the World Bank, and existing investor Everstone Capital in November 2015. In 2012, Everstone picked up 35% stake in S Chand & Co for $38 million. In 2014, S Chand Group acquired a majority stake in Delhi-based publisher New Saraswati House (I) Pvt Ltd.
In March this year, S Chand along with Blume Ventures invested $1 million in edu-tech startup FlipClass; and an undisclosed amount in online test preparation platform Testbook.com.
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