Startup Funding: Everything You NEED To Know About Angel, Seed, Series A, B, C, & D Funding, and Private Equity

Once you have a registered startup, the first thing to do is look for is Startup funding. While many founders have amazing startup ideas, it can be hard to get funding from VC firms instantly. The primary source of funding there startup for anyone is either their own money or loans taken from their friends and family.
startup funding sources
Shortly after starting off and building your prototype, you’re going to need more money. Where will you find it? This is when you start looking for funding. There are multiple stages of funding that every startup goes through. I’m going to tell you about four of these – angel investors, seed funding, venture capitals, and private equites for funding your startup.

What are Angel Investors?

angel investors
Long story short, an angel investor is typically an individual with a lot of money who wants to invest in your business in exchange for equity.
In detail, angel investors are wealthy individuals looking to invest in early-stage startups that have a strong base or idea in exchange for a share of the equity. These investors look for a working prototype or a defined model in place, a strategically prepared business plan, the founder’s dedication towards the company, to name a few things.
Angel investors usually only fill in the gap between self-funding and raising a round of series fundings. The amount invested by angel investors can be anywhere between only a few thousand dollars to a couple of million dollars. As these are individuals investing their own money, be prepared to answer a series of questions that hit very close to home. Raising funds from private investors is just as hard as raising funds from a venture capital firm. Companies showing a great potential for growth are ideal for angel investments. This potential can be measured via the willingness of people to pay for your product/services. A business that seems to be generating some sort of revenue is more likely to raise funding and a higher amount of funding for that matter. Angel investors are also interested in investing in startups with brilliant ideas and great team members.
For a list of angel investors, visit here.

What is Seed Funding?

seed funding
Seed funding is the earliest form of funding received by a startup. When a startup is looking for initial funding, the primary source of seed funding is personal investments by the founder. His/her family and friends, or angel investors. During this stage of funding, founders are usually still building the prototype of their model. There’s no actual source of income or profits, so companies survive on the seed capital only.
The amount invested at this stage is still very low as compared to others as this is only the basic capital needed to start your business. Investors expect a share of the equity in exchange for their investments. Usually, these funds are only used for market research and is useful till a startup finds venture capitals to invest in their business.

Venture Capital

What is Series A funding?
Series A funding is where a venture capital first gets involved. The funding raised in this series could be any single digit million dollar amount and there’s a slight chance it could go up to 15 million dollars. Being a venture capital firm that’s dedicated to investing in profitable companies with a growing customer base, the amount of funding raised is generally a lot higher as compared to that by an angel investor.
This stage of funding is where the first preferred stock is offered to external investors. The aim of raising Series A funding, apart from expanding your business, is also paying the salaries of all current employees. This opportunity can be used to dip your toes into different markets and expand. A crucial stage, this round of funding should be utilized in building a plan for long-term profit generation.

What is Series B funding?

After having utilized the previous round of funding in building a business plan for long-term profit and having your product available in the market for sale, it’s time for another round of funding. Series B funding is where businesses have access to a much greater amount of funding as compared to the previous funding. At this stage, it’s time to stop generating a decent amount of revenue and time to start making serious profits. Since the product is already out there and a business plan is in place, reaching this stage of funding means the risk of investment is lesser.
With series B funding, companies can expand their employee base and build a stronger team so as to expand in different markets and take the business to another level. Although the risk of investment is lower, the amount is higher. And this is why at this stage, companies are put to the test; reports are analyzed, businesses are dissected to reveal any sort of flaw in the plans or chances of a downfall.
venture capital funds

What is Series C funding?

During series C funding, investors are more interested in companies that are already successful in business. Companies go for this round of funding when they’re looking to expand to other markets or preparing for acquisitions. This is usually the stage after which companies have their first Initial Public Offering (IPO).
Amounts raised in series C funding stage could go up to hundreds of millions.
What is Series D funding?
If a company decides to not go public and stay private for a longer time, they opt for series D. A company reaching this stage of funding could have three scenarios –
– They’re holding on by a thread
– They’re doing extremely well in business
– They’ve chosen to stay private till they’re in a better condition for an IPO
Companies these days choose to go for rounds of fundings with smaller amounts instead of one big investment.
A list of the top 50+ venture capital firms is available here.

Private Equity

private equity
Private equity investments are made in companies that have not gone public yet. P.E firms invest huge sums of money with the aim of acquiring a good position with control in the company. Firms get their return on investments commonly when these companies have their Initial Public Offering. They also get their returns via mergers with other companies or when the company is acquired by another company.
If you want to expand your team and are looking to hire, give us a call at +91 87674 27427 or drop us an email at buzz {@] sutrahr.com anytime and we’ll get back to you!
If you want to work at an amazing startup, send us your resume at hiring {@] sutrahr.com or give us a call at +91 77188 73526 now.
Disclaimer: This is a generalized list. This list is based on the most common types of funding that startups receive. There will also be certain exceptions to the rule and a few might skip certain stages. For eg. These days we’ve also seen many pre-series A funded startups coming up.
In case you know any new patterns in startup funding, please let us know in the comment section below 🙂


Top 50+ Venture Capital Firms in India

Once the initial small sum of money received from family, friends or angel investors is over, and your small startup is in a position to scale up, hire more people, and dip toes in a bigger market, enter venture capital firms to help you do exactly that.
Top VC Firms India

What is venture capital funding? Venture capital is the financing that is made in startups or small businesses that have high growth potential. Apart from the capital, venture capital firms also bring in technical and managerial expertise to the table. This is done in lieu of the ownership stake in the growing business. Venture capitalists are usually high net worth individuals, insurance companies, large corporations, pension funds etc. and their objective is to earn the best return on investment (ROI) for the money they are investing.

There are VCs that invest in new-age industries and there are some that buy in to the passion and vision of the founders. Here is a list of Venture capital firms that might come in handy if you are looking for some money to flow into your brilliant business plan:

500 Startups Top VC Firm

1. 500 Startups

An early-stage venture fund, 500 startups has so far invested in over 1500 companies across 50 countries.
Key people: Pankaj Jain
Key sectors: Consumer commerce, Design, Food tech, Cloud services, Family tech and education, Payments and Financial services
Key investments: EduKart, Urjakart

Top VC Firm

2. Accel

Accel comes with over three decades of experience of supporting dreams of many entrepreneurs in domains spanning technology to media.
Key people: Mahendran Balachandran
Key sectors: Consumer, Internet, Mobile, Healthcare, Enterprise Software & Services
Key investments: Flipkart, BabyOye, Myntra, BookMyShow, HolidayIQ

Best Indian VC Firm

3. Ascent

Ascent Capital is an India-centric private equity and venture capital firm. Since its inception 15 years ago, Ascent has helped steer over 55 ventures across diverse sectors and continues to fuel many more entrepreneurial ideas.
Key people: Raja Kumar
Key sectors: Technology, Ecommerce, Healthcare, Financial Services, Consumer Brands, Infrastructure
Key investments: Bigbasket

Best VC Firm India

4. Bain Capital Private Equity

Started in 1984 by the partners from the consulting arm, Bain & Company, Bain Capital Private Equity has made over 270 high-return yielding investments, operating from eight offices on three continents.
Key people: Amit Chandra
Key sectors: Consumer, Retail & Dining, Financial & Business Services, Healthcare, Industrial & Energy, Technology, Media & Telecom
Key investments: Himadri

Venture Capital Firm India

5. Basil Partners

Basil Partners invests in either Indian or Asian companies which have expansion plans of going global or European/American companies with India or Asia as their focus area of operation.
Key people: Rajeev Srivastava
Key sectors: IT services
Key investments: Karmic Lifesciences

Best Venture Capital Firm

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6. Bessemer Venture Partners

Bessemer invests in all stages of a startup, from seed to growth. With 116 Bessemer backed companies gone the IPO route, the venture capital firm continues to be behind some of the names that have grown to become category leaders.
Key people: Vishal Gupta
Key sectors: Internet and mobile, Software products, Financial services, Healthcare, Power and infrastructure
Key investments: Snapdeal


7. Blume Ventures

India’s leading tech-focused VC firm, Blume prides in investing not in ideas but in people with passion. Their portfolio consists of more than 60 companies and they have been funding about 20 companies since inception.
Key people: Karthik Reddy
Key sectors: Software, Mobile, E-commerce
Key investments: Purplle, BedBathMore, RoadRunnr

Best Venture Capital India

8. Clearstone Venture Partners

Started in 1997 as one of the first to focus exclusively on internet investing, Clearstone has been a partner in the growth of many big names including PayPal.
Key people: Vish Mishra
Key sectors: Infrastructure, E-commerce, Social, Mobile
Key investments: Games2win, Billdesk

Best VC Firm India

9. Eight Roads Ventures

Eight Roads is the investment arm of Fidelity International Limited. They invest long term and have been invested in some companies for close to 25 years.
Key people: Kabir Narang
Key sectors: Healthcare, Technology, Consumer
Key investments: BankBazaar, Chai Point

Top Venture Capital India10.

Forum Synergies

Forum Synergies assists the investee companies with business leadership and operating expertise. It also lays emphasis on industry participation to help new companies.
Key people: Samir Inamdar
Key sectors: Engineering, Healthcare, Clean Technology, Information & Communication Technology
Key investments: Drishti, Cbazaar

Top Venture Capital Firm India

11. Fulcrum Venture India

A VC firm that believes in investing in great companies at a fair value and not ordinary businesses at bargain prices. Fulcrum also prides itself in being a hands on investor.
Key people: Krishna Ramanathan
Key sectors: Education, Financial Services, FMCG, Healthcare, niche Retail
Key investments: Richfeel Health and Beauty Pvt Ltd, SwaaS Systems

Venture Capital Firm India

12. General Atlantic LLC

GA brings a legacy of investing for the long term, building value over time. They get involved at the board level and work directly with the management on key initiatives.
Key people: Sandeep Naik
Key sectors: Internet & Technology, Retail & Consumer, Financial Services
Key investments: Mu Sigma, BillDesk, House of Anita Dongre

Google Venture Capital India

13. Google Capital

Founded in 2013, Google Capital is the late-stage growth capital fund financed by Alphabet Inc. and so far has invested in about 21 companies.
Key people: Kaushik Anand
Key sectors: Big Data, Fintech, Security, Vertical Market Software
Key investments: CarDekho, Practo, CommonFloor

Top VC Firm14.

Helion Venture Partners

An India based venture fund focussing on early to mid stage investments and so far have invested in 60 companies. The Economic Times announced Helion as India’s “largest domestic venture capital firm” for the year 2012.
Key people: Sanjeev Aggarwal
Key sectors: Technology, Education, Financial Services, Healthcare
Key investments: Bigbasket, MakeMyTrip, BabyOye, ShopClues

Idein Ventures VC Firm India

15. Idein Ventures

It invests with the objective of crazy growth, fuelled ambition and disruptive creation. Typically investing in early stages, it assists the startups beyond just providing money.
Key people: Ashwin Srivastava
Key sectors: Technology, Consumer
Key investments: Infurnia Furnishings, Qriyo Infolabs

Indian Venture Capital Firm

16. IDG Ventures India

IDG Ventures India is part of IDG Ventures, a global network of technology venture funds. Power and network of IDG platform and investing experience of India team is what differentiates them from the rest.
Key people: Sudhir Sethi
Key sectors: Consumer media & tech, Software, Health tech, Fintech
Key investments: FirstCry, Myntra, Tripoto, Yatra, Zivame

Best Indian Venture Capital Firm

17. Intel Capital

Intel Capital has so far invested in over 1445 companies in 57 countries, with 212 companies going public and 383 being acquired or participated in a merger.
Key people: Pradeep Tagare
Key sectors: Client & perpetual computing, Datacentre-cloud, Digital media, Internet, Manufacturing, Security, Smart devices, Software & Services
Key investments: Healthkart, Hungama, IndiaMart, Snapdeal, Savaari, Yatra

Top VC Firm

18. Inventus Capital Partners

Having invested in over 120 startups in India and US, Inventus has experience and interest in high-margin business models like internet marketplaces.
Key people: Kanwal Rekhi
Key sectors: Mobile, E-commerce, Services, Internet, Finance, Communications, Healthcare, Education
Key investments: redBus, Policy Bazaar, Savaari

Top Indian Venture Capital

19. IvyCap Ventures

IvyCap invests with an entrepreneur-centric approach where it focuses on professional entrepreneurs from premier education institutions of the country.
Key people: Vikram Gupta
Key sectors: Healthcare & life sciences, Education, Infrastructure, Technology, Agri & food processing
Key investments: Purplle, Clovia, BlueStone

Best VC Firm India

20. Jungle Ventures

Jungle Ventures has been investing and steering startups in Asia with investments made in India, Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand.
Key people: Anurag Srivastava
Key sectors: Consumer internet, enterprise tech
Key investments: Milaap, Tookitaki

Top Venture Capital Firm

21. Kae Capital

Largely sector agnostic, Kae Capital’s key focus is on investing in innovation, leadership, and growth. It looks for entrepreneurs who use technology to come up innovative solutions for the market needs.
Key people: Sasha Mirchandani
Key sectors: Mobile, E-commerce, Education, Healthcare, Consumer internet
Key investments: Healthkart, Truly Madly, Truebil, Frsh

Best Indian Venture Capital

22.Kalaari Capital

Kalaari believes in supporting entrepreneurs who are building innovative solutions that change the way we live, work, consume, and transact.
Key people: Vani Kola
Key sectors: E-commerce, Education, Healthcare
Key investments: Snapdeal, Myntra, Instamojo, Urban Ladder

Top Indian VC Firm

23. Lightbox Management Ltd

Lightbox is an eclectic mix of people who came together to start the fund. With the team having had worked in consumer technology space, this became their sector of choice at Lightbox.
Key people: Sandeep Murthy
Key sectors: Consumer technology
Key investments: Faasos, Cleartrip, Info Edge

Best Venture Capital Firm

24. Lightspeed Venture Partners

Founded in 2000, Lightspeed Venture has been investing in companies with a strong focus on disruptive innovations and trends in Enterprise and Consumer sectors.
Key people: Bejul Somaia
Key sectors: Advertising and media, Business services, Financial services, Healthcare, Education and Retail
Key investments: Limeroad, Freshmenu, Oyo, LocalOye

Top VC Firm India

25. Lok Capital Group

Lok Capital was founded with the objective of an inclusive growth. It invests in start-ups that cater to the largely ignored segments with investments in sectors like financial services, agriculture/livelihood, and healthcare sectors.
Key people: Rajiv B. Lall
Key sectors: Financial services, Agriculture/livelihood and Healthcare
Key investments: Veritas Finance, Drishti, RuralShores

Venture Capital Firm India

26. Matrix Partners India

Like its US counterpart which started in 1977, Matrix India has been investing in promising businesses and backing many dreams since 2006.
Key people: Avnish Bajaj
Key sectors: Consumer, Internet, Travel, E-commerce & marketplaces
Key investments: Limeroad, Ola, Practo

Best VC Firm India

27. Mayfield Fund

Started in 1969, Mayfield has invested in more than 520 companies globally, resulting in 114 IPO and more than 160 mergers and acquisitions.
Key people: Navin Chaddha
Key sectors: Consumer, Education, Media, Technology
Key investments: Knowlarity, TripHobo

Best Indian Venture Capital

28. Naspers

Naspers is a global internet and entertainment group with operations in more than 130 markets.
Key people: Bob van Dijk, Basil (Vasili) Sgourdos, Mark Sorour
Key sectors: B2C, Media
Key investments: OLX, redBus, Flipkart, Myntra, Goibibo

Top Venture Capital India

29. New Enterprise Associates

NEA’s investment strategy includes investing in all stages of the companies, from seed funding in emerging markets to funding early-stage companies in high-growth markets and growth-stage investments in market leaders.
Key people: Bala Deshpande
Key sectors: Consumer services, Infrastructure services, Alternative energy, Agriculture and Healthcare
Key investments: Naaptol

Best VC Firm India

30. Nexus Venture Partners

Nexus invests in early-stage companies and also provides follow-on investments at later stages of start-ups that have proven their mettle.
Key people: Sandeep Singhal
Key sectors: Consumer, Enterprise, Business services
Key investments: Craftsvilla, Delhivery, OLX, Stayzilla

Top VC Firm India

31. Nirvana Venture Advisors

Nirvana likes to be the first institutional investor for a startup to make a meaningful contribution to its growth.
Key people: Amit Patni
Key sectors: Mobile, Internet, E-commerce, Online travel, Online advertising and marketing
Key investments: Zopper, Housing, Games2win

Best Venture Capital Firm India

32. Norwest Venture Partners

A multi-stage venture capital firm, Norwest has funded more than 575 companies since its inception.
Key people: Niren Shah
Key sectors: Enterprise & SaaS, Cloud & IT, Internet & consumer, Services, Healthcare
Key investments: IndusInd Bank, ING Vysya Bank, Pepperfry

Top Venture Capital Firm India

33. Ojas Venture Partners

The experience of the management team along with the presence of a market need that can be addressed.
Key people: Dr Rajesh Srivathsa
Key sectors: Mobile applications, Telecom/wireless technologies, embedded software, Web application/services, Consumer internet and ecommerce, SaaS
Key investments: CBazaar, vizury

Best Venture Capital India

34. Orios Venture Partners

Orios invests in seed and series A investments in online consumer tech and SaaS startups.
Key people: Rehan yar Khan
Key sectors: Online consumer tech and SaaS
Key investments: Zo Rooms, Ola, Unbxd

Top VC Firm India

35. Qualcomm Ventures

Qualcomm has been investing in mobile and wireless innovation for 15 years now.
Key people: Karthee Madasamy
Key sectors: Healthcare, Consumer, Hardware, Systems/components, Enterprise
Key investments: Portea, YourStory, MapmyIndia, Fab Hotels

Best VC Firm India

36. Reliance Venture

The firm was launched with a mandate to invest in emerging and high-growth sectors across the globe.
Key people: Kshitij Gupta
Key sectors: Technology, Media & entertainment, Telecom, Infrastructure
Key investments: Yatra

Top Venture Capital India

37. Saama Capital

Saama Capital fund companies in early and growth stages. They are valued by entrepreneurs for taking an active part in helping them with operational, financing, and strategic matters.
Key people: Ash Lilani
Key sectors: Ecommerce, Tech field support, hardware and software
Key investments: Chai Point, BlueStone, iYogi, Snapdeal

Best Venture Capital Firm India

38. SAIF Partners

SAIF Partners has invested in about 50 companies in India with 5 companies going the IPO way.
Key people: Alok Goel
Key sectors: Consumer, ITES, Education, Internet, Healthcare
Key investments: bookmyshow, FirstCry, ixigo, Paytm, Swiggy

Top Venture Capital India

39. Seedfund

Seedfund invests in early stage startups across sectors and some of its invested companies have redefined the market paradigm for the Indian consumer.
Key people: Mahesh Murthy
Key sectors: Healthcare, Education, Rural marketing, E-commerce, Technology
Key investments: Redbus, CarWale

Top VC Firm India

40. Sequoia Capital

Sequoia Capital has invested in over 250 companies since 1972 and continues to invest in startups that dare to dream different.
Key people: Vt Bharadwaj
Key sectors: Consumer, Healthcare, Technology
Key investments: BankBazaar, Cardekho, Craftsvilla, Oyo

Top Venture Capital India

41. SIDBI Venture Capital Limited

SVCL invests in companies with high-growth potential, a committed management team, established performance record and a high degree of integrity.
Key people: Ananta Padmanabhan Sarma
Key sectors: Software, Technology, Light engineering, Clean-tech, Agro-based industries, Logistics, Infrastructure, Education services
Key investments: mycity4kids, Printland

Best Indian VC Firm

42. Steadview Capital

Steadview is a leading alternative asset manager making concentrated long-term investments across multiple industries.
Key people: Ravi Mehta
Key sectors: Consumer, Internet
Key investments: Flipkart, Ola, Urban Ladder

Top Indian Venture Capital Firm

43. Trifecta Capital Partners

Trifecta is into venture debt which is a boon for new economic businesses that have had access to only equity financing to fund their growth.
Key people: Rahul Khanna
Key sectors: Technology, Consumer, Healthcare
Key investments: Helpchat, knowlarity

Best Indian VC Firm

44. Tuscan Ventures

Tuscan has been actively investing in logistics and distribution domains and has also taken in to supply chain, food and agriculture industries in India.
Key people: Shagun Kapur Gogia
Key sectors: Logistics & distribution
Key investments: Coldstar

Venture Capital Firm India

45. Unilazer
Unilazer invests in businesses and sectors that are a part of India’s consumption story and high-impact sectors like agriculture, health care, microfinance, and education.
Key people: Ronnie Screwvala
Key sectors: Agriculture, Health Care, Micro Finance and Education
Key investments: Maroosh, Zivame, Lenskart

Top VC Firm India46. Unitus Seed Fund
Unitus Seed Fund provides seed funding to startups working towards innovations that help serve low-income population in the country.
Key people: Dave Richards
Key sectors: Education, Financial Technology, Mobile & Consumer, Retail & Ecommerce, Healthcare, Agriculture
Key investments: mGaadi, Milaap, Hippocampus

Best Venture Capital Firm India47. Utthishta
Utthishta provides seed funding along with focussed mentoring to early-stage startups for a small share of equity.
Key people: P. Ramakrishna
Key sectors: B2B software, web, mobile and cloud
Key investments: Scanova

Top Venture Capital Firm48. Ventureast
In over 15 years, Ventureast has helped over 60 businesses in technology, life sciences, and emerging sectors become leaders in their spaces.
Key people: Sarath Naru
Key sectors: Technology and Technology-enabled, Life science and clean environment, Seed and incubation stage businesses
Key investments: Portea

Best Indian Venture Capital Firm49. Vertex Ventures
Vertex invests in companies that are poised to tap the young and energetic demographic, the emerging confidence of middle class and rapidly adopt disruptive technologies.
Key people: Ben Mathias
Key sectors: Mobile, Internet, Services, Tech-enabler
Key investments: FirstCry, Yatra

Top Indian VC Firm50. Warburg Pincus
A global player in private equity space, Warburg Pincus has raised 15 private equity funds that have invested in over 750 companies in over 40 countries.
Key people: Niten Malhan
Key sectors: Energy, Financial Services, Healthcare, Consumer, Technology, Media, Telecommunications, Industrial & Business Services
Key investments: CarTrade, BIBA, Quikr, Lemon Tree Hotels

Top Indian Venture Capital Firm51. Zodius Capital
Zodius partners with entrepreneurs to build India-centric businesses that have the potential of creating new markets and also have the potential of yielding high growth.
Key people: Neeraj Bhargava
Key sectors: Enterprise software & services, Data & analytics, Consumer mobile/internet markets
Key investments: Bigbasket

Now these are 51 of the most active venture capital/private equity firms currently operating in India. Think we missed any? Do let us know in the comments section.

If you are a startup, have got the much-needed funding and are now looking to expand your team, let us help you hire the very best for your startup. Reach out to Waqar at buzz {at] sutrahr.com or +91 87 67 427 427 and we will take care of the rest.


Seed Funding from Blume Ventures, IQ for Mumbai Startup RedQuanta


Compared to the dot-com boom (and bust) of the last decade, this one seems to be pretty nice for startups, especially in India as they are getting a lot of seed funding. Many venture capitalists and angel investors are showing confidence in startups in India. According to a post on WATblog, Mumbai-based RedQuanta, a mystery shopping audit company, has received seed funding from Blume Ventures, India Venture Partners, and India Quotient as well as a few angel investors.

Seed Funding RedQuanta

As of now, there is no information as to how much seed funding has RedQuanta received. But industry insiders have hypothesized that the funding could be in the range of a million dollars. Blume Ventures and India Quotient both are early stage investors, with the latter having being set up just a few weeks before. The mystery shopping company uses a unique and result-oriented approach.

RedQuanta was established a few months ago by Pankaj Guglani. He says, “Retail industry is witnessing a huge shift from unorganized to the organized sector. We are building our capabilities to tap this growth. The need is very evident to have robust systems for customer intelligence – systems that bring accurate predictability, access to real time information and provide actionable insights. In fact, RedQuanta is one of the first in the country to use location-aware mobile application for data gathering and for performing instant audits.”

He has previously worked with Zapak Digital Entertainment in the capacity of a Business Head. The Mumbai-based company has already managed to win nearly 50 clients. Well, the digital media industry sure is creating a lot of jobs and recruitment for digital agencies is on the rise too.

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