Published: 2/5/2021

Good morning, it's Friday and we're closing up this week with news about 2 companies that I am a big fan of! But before that, Sharad Sharma (founder of iSpirit) is doing a Clubhouse room on "Building for India"- deets in our tweet of the day.

  • http://tcrn.ch/3pTksmV: There's a new gold company in town
  • ➡️ Indiagold, started by ex-Paytm execs Deepak Abbott and Nitin Mishra, recently raised a $2M seed round led by Leo Capital with several influential angel investors participating in the round including Kunal Shah, Kunal Bahl and Rohit Bansal, Amrish Rau, Miten Sampat and a bunch more.

    ➡️ Most Indians don't have access to credit from formal financial institutions as they have no way to prove their creditworthiness- and then you have predatory informal institutions like the hundreds of personal loan apps Google recently banned in India.

    ➡️ What Indians do have though, is gold. And they have a bunch of it- 25,000 tons of gold ($1.4T). However a lot of people treated this like a dead asset, and monetizing it could have a significant impact on India's GDP (Convincing people to do so is another challenge altogether).

    ➡️ Indiagold aims to do a couple of things in particular- firstly while some people use safe deposit boxes at their banks to store gold and other items, they are often quite expensive and without any insurance protection. Indiagold lets consumers store their gold for very little and has made it much more convenient and secure to store your gold.

    ➡️ Moreover since they store their gold with Indiagold, opening a credit line using the gold as collateral takes very little time, since all the work has already been pre-done. And while this is a cool wedge product that the company started with initially, what they're doing next is even cooler.

    ➡️ It has built a platform that determines the creditworthiness of its customers (since it owns this proprietary data) and lets banks and lenders consume the data as APIs who are looking to reach this untapped market- imagine new financial services could use Indiagold's API to determine if a user qualifies or not.

    2. http://bit.ly/3tuaXgo: SUGAR raises a $21M Series C led by Elevation

    ➡️ SUGAR, the omnichannel cosmetics company, has raised $21M in a Series C round led by Elevation Capital with existing investors A91 Partners and India Quotient. The new round values the company at over $100M.

    ➡️ The company's CEO, Vineeta Singh, says that they will be using the capital to bolster their R&D, focusing on content creation and expand their distribution. The compamu aims to double their Rs 200 Cr revenue run rate in the next 12 months (🔥🔥🔥)

    ➡️ And while due to the pandemic, a large percentage of the company's orders came through online channels- the company plans to expand their offline and retail presence as a majority of the population still shops offline. The company plans to go from 10k outlets to 40k in the next 18 months (they really seem to be stepping up on growth).

    ➡️ Indian DNVB seem to be having their moment and I'm excited to see more brands come up and build large (or even massive) businesses and followings.

    Feedback & ❤️ always appreciated BONUS (Tweet of the day): https://twitter.com/Product_nation/status/1357344266968649730

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