Unicorns Startup has become a buzzword in the year 2020. The number of unicorn companies each year has increased from four to 82 in just seven years. According to CB Insights, there are currently over 500 unicorn companies in the world, with a total valuation of about US$1.6 trillion.
As of early August, India claimed 21 unicorns, according to Hurun Research (although it recognized several other Indian unicorns that were headquartered outside the country). Since then, three more Indian unicorns have been added, bringing the total number of unicorns on the subcontinent to 24.
Time to unicorn: 5 years
Cars24, an online used car sales website, was the most recent unicorn to emerge from India this year. In November of this year, the company received $200 million in Series E funding. DST Global led the round, which raised the company’s value to $1 billion.
The funding also marked a half-billion-dollar increase in valuation from the previous round of funding. The Startup was valued at $500 million in its most recent funding round, a $100 million Series D. In addition, the business has taken on some debt. In July of this year, it received INR100 million ($1.4 million) in debt funding from Vivriti Capital.
Time to unicorn: 5 years
This Indian unicorn, which competes with Byju, has seen its value skyrocket this year. It began the year with a $110 million Series E round led by Facebook and General Atlantic. The edtech business was estimated at $510 million post-money in the round.
When this Startup raised $150 million in funding in September of this year, it was valued at $1.45 billion. The round was led by SoftBank’s Vision Fund 2.
The company went on to raise more money from two major investors, valuing it at $2 billion this time. In this round, Tiger Global Management and Dragoneer Investment Group are said to have invested $75-100 million in Unacademy.
Time to unicorn: 6 years
Postman, an API network, grew from a $1 million seed round to a $208 million total funding round in six years (according to Crunchbase data). The company earned a significant 72 percent of this in the same round that helped it reach a valuation of $1 billion.
Nexus Venture Partners provided seed funding of $1 million a year after the company was established in 2014. In 2016, Nexus Venture Partners led the company’s Series A round, which raised $7 million. Postman’s next round of investment was in 2019 when Nexus Venture Partners and CRV invested $50 million in the company.
Postman was named a unicorn this year after raising $150 million in a Series C funding round in June.
Time to unicorn: 7 years
In October of this year, Razorpay surpassed the $1 billion mark after raising $100 million in a Series D round. GIC, Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund, and Sequoia Capital India co-led the round. According to a company statement, it also made Razorpay the first neobank to become an Indian unicorn.
Razorpay’s clients include some of India’s and the world’s largest corporations. Facebook and Google, Wikipedia, and other fintech like Zerodha and Khatabook, as well as Indian unicorns Byju’s, Zomato, and OYO, are among them.
Since its inception in 2013, the company has raised over $200 million in several rounds, including its Series D.
Time to unicorn: 8 years
Nykaa is a popular eCommerce aggregator in India for beauty and personal care products. After raising INR1 billion ($14 million) in funding from TPG Growth last year, it became a ‘soonicorn,’ or a company that is predicted to become a unicorn in the near future.
After the offer, the company was valued at $724 million, up to $200 million from its previous valuation of INR1.13 billion after 2018 fundraise from Lighthouse India.
Nykaa received another INR1 billion ($13 million) in April this year, bringing its total funding to $1 billion. Steadview Capital, a current investor, provided the funds, which priced the Startup at $1.2 billion. Last month, it received additional undisclosed funding from Fidelity Investments.
Time to unicorn: 10 years
Zerodha is a stock brokerage firm that was established in 2010. Kite, the company’s innovative retail trading platform, has made it popular with both seasoned and novice traders.
Another thing Zerodha is known for is its ability to self-fund its way to success and profitability as an Indian startup. It grew to become India’s largest stockbroking platform and one of the country’s newest unicorns without taking any outside funding.
After an ESOP buyback in June this year at a self-assessed value of INR70 billion, or nearly $1 billion, Zerodha became a unicorn.
Time to unicorn: 10 years
FirstCry made headlines earlier this year when it raised $150 million from SoftBank’s Vision Fund. It achieved unicorn status as a result of the funding.
The $150 million is part of the company’s ongoing Series E funding round. In this round, SoftBank will invest a total of $400 million in the business. It had already put $149 million into the Startup the previous year. In January 2021, FirstCry will earn an additional $100 million.
According to Entrackr, the transaction priced the firm at $1.2 billion and gave SoftBank a 40% interest. The deal was finalized in 2018, according to FirstCry’s website.
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