Singapore: Impact Guru secures $500k seed, forms strategic pact with Fundnel

Visual of Impact Guru homepage. April 2016.

Impact Guru, a Harvard Innovation Labincubated fintech company that provides social crowdfunding services, has secured a seed investment of $500,000 from Singapore-based venture capital (VC) firm RB Investments and private investment platform Fundnel.

Impact Guru, described by co-founder and CEO Piyush Jain as a “full stack crowdfunding solution that combines social or donation crowdfunding, rewards crowdfunding, and investment crowdfunding / fundraising for individuals, nonprofits, social enterprises, or startups,” with the venture launched to address problems associated with the traditional charity and social enterprise fundraising model in India.

It has offices in Mumbai, New Delhi, Singapore, Hong Kong, Jakarta, Kuala Lumpur, and San Francisco.

The capital raised from RB Investments and Fundnel, as well as the strategic partnership with Fundnel, will see Impact Guru scale social/donation online crowdfunding for nonprofits, social enterprises and personal causes, as well as leverage Fundnel’s private investment network for facilitating equity or debt funding offline for startups and social enterprises in India and Southeast Asia.

The strategic partnership will see both Impact Guru and Fundnel collaborate in crowdfunding, technology and deal syndication.

Also Read: Singapore’s Fundnel, India’s Anthill collaborate to leverage portfolio startups

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Harshavardhan Bothra, director, RB Investments, commented: “Impact Guru is well aligned with our investment philosophy of investing in companies with great founders, who are tackling a complex multi-faceted problem through a disruptive approach that provides a rapidly scalable business opportunity.”

He elaborated: “Crowdfunding and fintech are at a very early stage of evolution in India and Southeast Asia. The strategic partnership with Fundnel differentiates Impact Guru from other players in the market and will further accelerate its growth. Impact Guru is one of several startups that is inspired by the Start-up India Stand Up India initiative of the Indian government.”

Fundnel will curate and invite startups and/or social enterprises that have successfully leveraged Impact Guru’s crowdfunding platform in India to demonstrate traction to Fundnel’s network of family offices, venture capital funds, and accredited investors for international investment and for further scaling within Southeast Asia.

Kelvin Lee, co-founder and CEO of Fundnel, said, “We believe that this exclusive partnership will give us access to more investors and deal flow from the Indian community, which will allow us to provide more products and services to our existing customer base in Southeast Asia.”

“We aim to further scale our footprint through this partnership in order to gain access to the Indian startup and investment community. Furthermore, with this door into the niche market of social enterprises, we believe that we can provide our new and existing investors with more innovative deals and socially responsible investing opportunities,” Lee added.

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Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.