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50 hot startups 2017

$24 million funding takes Amica pre launch valuation to $70 million

Amica, still in stealth mode, is expected to be valued at $70 million, in one of the largest maiden funding rounds raised in the domestic market.
New Delhi: Amica Financial Technologies, an upcoming digital retail bank founded by Citrus Pay cofounder Jitendra Gupta, has received $24 million in its maiden funding round.

The funding is backed by a list of institutional investors including Greyhound Capital, 3One4 Capital, Germany’s Rocket Internet, venture capital funds Matrix Partners and Sequoia Capital.

Gupta is among a growing tribe of second-time entrepreneurs who have attracted big bucks from marquee investors before officially launching. The startup has also brought on board a host of angel investors.

These include Amrish Rau, former managing director of PayU India, Falcon Edge Capital’s Navroz Udwadia, DST Global’s Rahul Mehta, Snapdeal’s Kunal Bahl and Rohit Bansal, Kunal Shah of Cred, BookMyShow founder Ashish Hemrajani and Nubank founder David Velez.

Amica, still in stealth mode, is expected to be valued at $70 million, in one of the largest maiden funding rounds raised in the domestic market.

ET first reported the fundraising on August 9.

Gupta confirmed to ET that the funding round had closed, but declined to share details.

The venture will provide savings account, investments and lending services to the salaried millennial population with an income demographic of Rs 50,000 and upwards, in partnership with a large private bank, whose name has yet to be disclosed.

It is yet unclear if the company will apply for a banking license on its own yet.

Its business model will be based on UK-based digital mobile-only Monzo and Brazil's Nubank, which are popularly termed as neo banks.

It is formally expected to launch operations in February or March next year.

Other institutional investors in the company include BeeNext and Tanglin Venture Partners, while Nitin Kamath, cofounder and CEO of Zerodha, Freecharge’s Sandeep Tandon; Anupam Mittal, CEO of People Group, and Manish Vij, co-founder of Smile Group, have also invested in their personal capacities.

The funding amount is the latest in a series of high-profile entrepreneurs that have scooped up significant amounts of capital for their second ventures, having already scored successful exits for themselves and their investors the first time round.

Gupta, along with cofounders Rau and Satyen Kothari sold CitrusPay to Naspers-owned PayU in 2016 for about $130 million. The Mumbai-based chartered accountant then joined PayU’s India operations for three years, setting up its credit business LazyPay in his stint there.

Other high-profile second-time entrepreneurs who have racked up big funding include Kunal Shah, who started Cred and Ashish Kashyap, after selling Ibibo Group to MakeMyTrip.
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