Mumbai-headquartered BabyChakra, a social discovery platform for young parents in India, has raised fresh funding of an undisclosed amount in its pre-Series-B round from several investors, including Mark Mobius, Equanimity Ventures Fund, Facebook director Anand Chandrasekaran and OYO’s Chief Strategy Officer Maninder Gulati.
Other investors who participated in this round include Gideon Marks, a Silicon Valley investor; Eitan Toledo, senior director at Apple; Mandar Vaidya, former head of healthcare practice for McKinsey India; and B. Ravishankar, former chief human resources officer, HCL Technologies.
Existing investors Arihant Patni, Artha Ventures and Bharat Rawla also participated in the round.
The startup will use the freshly raised capital to further strengthen BabyChakra’s regional and language-specific content and communities as well as deepen personalization in the product platform. The funds will also help startup to facilitate broader integrations in the maternity & childcare ecosystem.
Founded in 2015, by a Harvard Business School alumnus, Naiyya Saggi, Babychakra is currently the argest platform for Indian parents to discover care for their families. The platform hosts the largest community of mothers and have also created the first of its kind globally, maternity and childcare marketplace. More than 70% of BabyChakra users are families from Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities in India, who use the platform in 10 languages to make critical health and wellness decisions for mothers and children.
Prior to this, BabyChakra had last secured series-A funding from RoundGlass Partners, in October 2016. Prior to that, the startup raised seed funding from Mumbai Angels, Patni Family Office, and Singapore Angel Network.
Naiyya Saggi, also CEO of BabyChakra, has an extensive experience in maternity and child care and has worked with both McKinsey and the Public Health Foundation of India. She is also a Mentor at Facebook’s flagship program #SheLeadsTech to support and accelerate Indian women founders in technology.
BabyChakra expects its user base to grow about 5-10 times to touch about 10-15 million users by the end of FY19. “India’s offline baby care market stands at $30 billion, with the online space doubling every year,” said Saggi to Livemint.com.
In September last year, BabyChakra brought on board former FreeCharge executive, Rachita Choudhary, as Head of Engineering and Samarth Sawhney, founding member of Jabong and Hopscotch, as BabyChakra’s Head of Growth.
At that time, BabyChakra had said that its planning to bring on board advanced technologies like machine learning and natural language processing to help reach out to hundreds of millions of more parents in a highly personalized way and in a context that is relevant to their child’s overall development, geography, language, and socio-economic factors.
In March this year, RoundGlass Partners, who is also an investor in BabyChakra, had acquired BabyOnBoard, which is an another parenting memories & milestone platform.
In the same month, Healofy, a women-centric, multilingual parenting social network had raised $1 million from Omidyar Network as part of their seed round.
In September of last year, an another woman-led startup Mamaearth had raised $1 million to fund the brand’s innovation pipeline for entering into more categories with safer & healthier products for babies & mother starting with the launch of ‘Traditional Recipes’ by Mamaearth a range of wellness solutions for mothers including herb teas & supplements.
BabyChakra competes with other similar platforms including Tinystep, Parenttune, Parentlane, Zen Parent and Babygogo. Flipkart-backed Tinystep raised $2 million in funding early last year.
The parenting market in India is pegged at $30-billion and several app based startups are coming up to provide a platform to new parents seeking guidance on pre and post pregnancy phases.
[Top Featured Image ~ Times of India]