Paytm Books $5-m Ride with Jug­noo in Se­ries-B Round

The Economic Times - - Disruption: - Surabhi.Agar­wal @times­group.com

New Delhi: Ecom­merce and dig­i­tal wal­let firm Paytm has in­vested an­other $5 mil­lion in Jug­noo, lead­ing a se­ries-B round of fundrais­ing in the auto rick­shaw ag­gre­ga­tor and hy­per­local de­liv­ery firm. The Chandi­garh-based startup has raised $10 mil­lion in this round from in­vestors in­clud­ing Snow leop­ard, an ex­ist­ing in­vestor, and ven­ture cap­i­tal firm Rock­et­ship.vc.

“With fur­ther in­fu­sion of funds, Jug­noo will be equipped to scale up its oper­a­tions across the country and Paytm is happy to be a part of its growth story,” said Ki­ran Vasireddy, se­nior vice pres­i­dent of Paytm.

Vasireddy said that Jug­noo has dis­played po­ten­tial in cre­at­ing dis­rup­tion in the pub­lic trans­porta­tion ecosys­tem, its auto hail­ing ser­vice has picked up well and it is wit­ness­ing speedy growth.

Jug­noo, which cur­rently op­er­ates in 30 cities and 11 vil­lages, has ramped up its ser­vices quickly in the past few months. It faces stiff com­pe­ti­tion from ri­vals in­clud­ing Soft­Bank-backed Ola. Ear­lier this month, Ola launched auto book­ings in 12 ad­di­tional cities, in­creas­ing its to­tal count to 24 cities in the country.

With this in­vest­ment, Paytm has got ex­po­sure to on­line ag­gre­ga­tor busi­ness as well. The com­pany al­ready has oper­a­tions in ecom­merce and dig­i­tal wal­let busi­nesses and has also been awarded a pay­ment bank li­cence by the Re­serve Bank of In­dia. Paytm had coin­vested in Jug­noo in a $5-mil­lion round in June last year in which Snow Leop­ard Tech­nol­ogy Ven­tures had also par­tici- pated.

Jug­noo raised $3 mil­lion in the first tranche of this round and added $2.5 mil­lion in the sec­ond tranche. In the sec­ond part of the se­ries B fund­ing, $5 mil­lion has come from Paytm and the re­main­ing $5 mil­lion from other in­vestors.

Sa­mar Singla, CEO of Jug­noo, said that the com­pany will in­vest th­ese funds in im­prov­ing the driver ef­fi­ciency and in­creas­ing the num­ber of cities that it op­er­ates in. “We have been re­ceiv­ing a phe­nom­e­nal re­sponse from driv­ers who are now read­ily adopt­ing tech­nol­ogy as a means of in­creas­ing their daily earn­ings. And with the kind of im­pact we have been able to make at the grass-roots, I am sure we have a long way to go,” he said. Jug­noo has de­vel­oped a net­work of about 10,000 auto-rick­shaw driv­ers across In­dia.

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