India: RB Investments backs personal assistant app Tapzo

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Coraza Technologies Pvt. Ltd, which operates personal assistance app Tapzo, has raised an undisclosed amount of funding from Singapore-based RB Investments.

According to the investor’s recent portfolio list on its website, it has backed two more Indian companies- TravelTriangle and InstantPay besides Tapzo.

Investors who had participated in the Tapzo’s previous round include New York-based Ru-Net, Japanese seed investor East Ventures and American Express Co’s investment arm American Express Ventures.

It could not be immediately ascertained if thIs fundraise is a part of the bigger round the firm is raising and existing partners also participated in the round.

Tapzo’s spokesperson declined to comment on the investment. Separate email queries sent to RB Investments and the existing investors including Sequoia Capital, Ru-Net, East Ventures and American Express Ventures went unanswered.

Founded by Ankur Singla, Vishal Pal Chaudhary, Vishrut Chalsani and Avinash Vankadaru, Bangalore-headquartered Tapzo was started as Akosha in 2010 with a vision to build a platform to help consumers getting their customer service issue resolved.

Also Read: India: Infosys invests $2m in Danish AI startup UNSILO

China: AI startup SenseTime raises $120m led by CDH Investments

In 2011, the company had raised around $200k funding from VC firm Sequoia Capital and in 2014, and it then received $5 million more in a Series A round by the VC firm. Post this funding, the startup changed vision and decided to include information as well as complaint/follow-up in their product on a chat on the go basis.

In 2015, Akosha was rechristened as Helpchat, an all-in-one app which the user could use for multiple things without having to download so many apps. In May 2016, the startup closed its chat services as it did not turn out the way the company had expected. It also laid off an unspecified number of employees working in those operations, and tweaked its business strategy and became anti-chat, a virtual personal assistant.

Helpchat recently rebranded it as Tapzo which allows users to access over 35 apps without downloading them across categories like cabs, food, recharge, bill payments, online deals, local deals, news, videos, horoscope and cricket updates. It also acquired Mumbai-based deals and discovery platform Niffler.

Early this month, Tapzo released a new version of its Android app in Hindi. The company has offices in Delhi and Mumbai also.

Singapore-based VC firm RB Investments is owned by Rajesh Bothra, who runs an IT distribution company Kobian Pte Ltd also. The VC firm has backed a number of Indian companies so far. These include fashion app Voonik, online travel marketplace TravelTriangle, digital payments startup InstantPay, food-tech start-up Swiggy, tech-enabled hotel chain FabHotels.com, online jewellery retailer Bluestone.com, online retailer of branded Indian food products Delight Foods, online furniture start-up CapriCoast.com and laundry services start-up 5-a-sec.

Recently, lots of artificial intelligence (AI) startups attracted investors’ interest across Asia. Some of the deals in the space include Silicon Valley-based AI startup PerceptIn‘s funding from Matrix Partners China; Matrix Partners China, Kinzon Capital, Zero2IPO Venture’s $14 million investment in Shenxing Tech; Chinese deep learning startup SenseTime‘s $120 million funding from alternative asset management firm CDH Investments and others; Infosys’ $2.14 million investment in UNSILO, a Danish artificial intelligence startup focussed on advanced text analysis; and Delhi’s Octo.ai funding from early- stage investor Outbox Ventures, Rahul Khanna, managing partner of venture debt fund Trifecta Capital and Jaspreet Bindra, head of e-commerce at Mahindra & Mahindra among other deals.

Also Read:

India: Voonik raises $6m from Sequoia, Singapore’s RB Investments

TravelTriangle raises $10m in Series B led by Singapore’s RB Investments