Chennai-based Inthree Access, a rural area-focussed marketing, retailing and distribution firm, has raised $4 million in a Series A funding led by Ventureast, which also saw participation from Orios Venture Partners and the IAN Fund.

The startup will use the freshly raised capital to strengthen its technology backbone, enhance capabilities in last mile logistics and deepen its penetration in the 10 states where it operates.

Founded in 2013, by Ramachandran Ramanathan, Karthik Natarajan and Narayanan, Inthree is an mpact venture that focuses on achieving the triple goals of rural distribution, rural project implementation and rural consultancy by offering last mile distribution and expertise in working in rural markets. Inthree claims to be the safest bet to reach the farthest towns and villages in the hinterland and is a great channel to distribute products and services of immense social value to lower income groups.

Inthree also operate an e-commerce venture exclusively for rural areas called Boonbox. In September last year, Boonbox raised an undisclosed amount in pre series A round from a group of investors including Keiretsu Forum and existing investors Indian Angel Network.

Through Boobox, the company claims to have sold more than 1.5 million durable goods to more than one million households.

In a statement a business daily, co-Founders Ramanathan, Karthik and Narayanan said, "Inthree has always focused on providing the most appropriate products, backed by home delivery (irrespective of distance) and top class after-sales service. We are delighted to be funded by some of the best names in the industry and plan to utilize the funds to increase scale and strengthen our backend capabilities to delight our customers."

Rohan Dedhia, Assistant Vice President, Orios Venture says, “Boonbox is building a technology enabled commerce platform for Bharat, the next 500mn consumers in India, that hail from the smallest towns and villages in India. The company has a vision to own this ecosystem: sales, financing, logistics and service, that is currently missing in these regions. We believe that, just like in other areas like content, technology enabled commerce in India will be driven by models made for vernacular speakers. The company's growth so far, is a testament to this."

Last month, Orios Venture Partners had also participated in the funding round of Jaipur-based B2B wholesale e-commerce venture Wholesalebox.

About Ventureast, it is a two-decade-old firm investing since 1997 and has about $325 million in assets under management. The investment firm, touted as one of India's longest standing venture capital firms, has made more than 100 investments so far. It had also invested in Little Eye Labs, a tool for app developers which was later got acquired by Facebook.

Source - Economic Times

[Top Image - R. Ramanathan, Founder, Inthree Access | Via -]

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