India Dealbook: Amazon in talks to pick stake in Housejoy; Aspiring Minds floats $1m seed fund

Himanshu Aggarwal CEO and Co-Founder, Aspiring Minds

Amazon is in advanced talks to buy a stake in Housejoy to cash in on the growing on-demand home services marketplace in India. Gurgaon-based job credentialing platform Aspiring Minds has set up a fund of $1 million to provide seed capital to start-ups in education and employment technology space.

Amazon in talks to buy stake in Housejoy

E-commerce major Amazon is in advanced talks to buy a stake in Housejoy to cash in on the on-demand home services marketplace in India, said a report in The Economic Times.

Launched in January 2015, Housejoy is operated by Bangalore-based Sarvaloka Services On Call Pvt Ltd. It provides a variety of on-demand services including maintenance and home repairs to plumbing, electrical, computer repairs and also specialised services in beauty and in-house bridal make-up.

The deal, when it happens, will see Amazon leading a funding round of $15-20 million in the Bengaluru-based startup, the report said.

Housejoy is backed by serial entrepreneur couple Krishnan Ganesh and Meena Ganesh, as well as venture capital firm Matrix Partners India.

Housejoy was incubated at the Ganesh couple’s GrowthStory. The company recently raised $4 million in series A funding from Matrix Partners and also appointed former Flipkart product management executive Saran Chatterjee as its CEO for steering and expanding operations.

In the past, Amazon has backed startups like online financial services marketplace BankBazaar and gift card technology and retail firm QwikCilver Solutions in India.

Aspiring Minds floats $1 million seed fund

Gurgaon-based job credentialing platform Aspiring Minds has set up a fund of $1 million (about Rs 6.5 crore) to provide seed capital to start-ups in education and employment technology space.

The funds, which will be invested over the next 12-18 months, will focus on investing in technology driven companies which are developing innovative solutions using mobile technology and data science to address inefficiencies in the education and labor market.

“We work with millions of students and job seekers and clearly see a wide range of addressable gaps. With innovation in mobile technology and data science, fast access to the market, many of these problems can now be addressed effectively. We want to encourage companies which match disruptive innovation solutions like ours to build capabilities in the education and employment technology space”, said Himanshu Aggarwal,Co-founder and CEO, Aspiring Minds.

The funds will be largely focused on the markets of India, China and the US. Besides assisting with capital, Aspiring Minds is also willing to incubate these companies for a fixed time duration, if required.

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.