India VC Dealbook: Ankur Capital invests in Skillveri; Jugnoo acquires Bistro Offers, Yelo.Red; XSTOK gets funds from Oliphans Capital

In Photo: Skillveri Co-founder Sabrinath C

Impact investor Ankur Capital has invested an undisclosed amount in Chennai-based Skillveri Training Solutions, while B2B transactional platform XSTOK has raised $0.45 million from Oliphans Capital, and other angel investors. In yet another deal in the startups space, Chandigarh-based hyperlocal marketplace Jugnoo has acquired two companies – restaurant discovery app Bistro Offers and mobile-only services marketplace Yelo.Red.

Ankur Capital invests in training simulator maker Skillveri

Mumbai-based impact investor Ankur Capital has invested an undisclosed amount in Skillveri Training Solutions, a Chennai-based company that creates simulators for hard skills training.

Skillveri uses advanced technology to create simulators, empowering trainers to deliver skill training and create a high-quality workforce.

“We are utilizing this investment to further strengthen our market presence in newer segments and for the development of newer simulators for adjacent markets,” Skillveri co-founder Sabarinath C said.

India will see a manufacturing skills gap of nearly 90 million workers by 2020, almost twice the current figure due to lack of right skilled manpower, and thereby result in poor productivity. Part of the cause of this skill gap is due to lack of proper training by training institutes and training facilities. The training opportunity in this space alone is expected to be $2-4 billion, he added.

Founded by Sabarinath C and L Kannan, the company is incubated at the Rural Technology & Business Incubator (RTBI) at IIT Madras. Sabari is an engineering and management professional with wide experience in development and marketing of technology solutions. Prior to co-founding Skillveri, he was handling marketing of Vortex ATMs.

Kannan is a “parallel” entrepreneur and award winning innovator. He is also the Founder & CTO of Vortex and Managing Trustee of Fractal Foundation.

Currently, the company offers tailor made solutions for welding training requirements for industries, vocational training institutes and polytechnic and engineering colleges. It is expanding its simulation technology for a variety of manufacturing and construction sectors including crane handling and spray painting.

Last year, Ankur Capital had also invested $75,000 in Bangalore-based CropIn Technology Solutions Pvt Ltd, which provides a cloud-based platform to help farmers track their produce and consignment status.

XSTOK raises $0.45 million from Oliphans Capital, others

B2B transactional platform XSTOK has raised $0.45 million (Rs 3 crore) from Oliphans Capital, an early stage investment firm, along with a group of leading angel investors.

XSTOK is an auction-based marketplace for overstock apparels, home textiles, fabrics and yarns, and counts textile companies Garden Vareli, Arvind Mills and Bombay Dyeing as its clients.

The funds will be used by the company to get new suppliers on board for the categories, including yarns, that it intends to launch over the next two months.

The angel investors who participated in the funding include Jeetu Panjabi (ex CGI), Manish Chokshi (Asian Paints), Anupam Mittal (People group), Vineet Suchanti (Keynote Capital) and a group of professionals heading consulting, stock broking and logistics companies.

XSTOK, started in January 2015 by Sanjiv Khandelwal and Mihir Shah, is a mobile-first platform with fully transactional Android and iOS apps. While it is designed to service multiple industries, it is currently active in the textile industry. Since its inception in July, the company has carried out 150 auctions.

Jugnoo acquires two tech startups Bistro Offers and Yelo.Red

Chandigarh based hyperlocal marketplace Jugnoo has acquired two companies – restaurant discovery app Bistro Offers and mobile-only services marketplace Yelo.Red.

With these acquisitions, Jugnoo intends to strengthen its presence in the hyper-local content discovery space. However, Bistro Offers and Yelo would continue to be independent products and their existing teams will continue to build and grow the product.

Bistro Offers is a deal discovery platform that users can use to find nearby deals and get rewarded for loyalty at certain brands, whereas, Yelo is a mobile only peer-to-peer (P2P) platform that connect users with other professionals or services.

Jugnoo started as an auto rickshaw aggregator and quickly diversified into hyperlocal deliveries and currently runs three apps – Jugnoo Autos, Jugnoo Meals and Jugnoo Fatafat. Earlier in July, the firm also acquired taxi aggregator BookMyCab with the intent to get a faster foothold in Mumbai market.