SRI Capital, a seed-stage investment firm, has put in a total of USD 1.3 million (INR 8.8 crore) in YellowDig and Zuppler, two US-based companies that operate on a SAAS(software-as-a-service) model and have operations in India.
YellowDig has been awarded with USD1 million and Zuppler got the remaining amount, SRI Capital said in a statement. As part of the negotiations Sashi Reddi, SRI Capital Founder and Managing Partner will join the board of the two firms.
These latest deals take the total tally of startup investments made by SRI to 23, of which majority of the startups (15) are SaaS-based firms. The twin deals follow SRI Capital’s investment last week in WorkApps, an enterprise workflow collaboration firm.
“My thesis on SaaS is quite simple. If the product is built in India, is targeting the US market and there is some proof that the product works and meets a market need then I am usually the first institutional capital in that startup,” said Reddi.
He said SRI Capital invests around USD 500,000 typically, but can go up to USD1 million. “I help startups with sales and marketing in the US, recruitment, and future fund raising,” Reddi added.
Yellowdig is a discussion board tool with the look and feel of Facebook or Reddit. It was founded in 2014 by Shaunak Roy, an IIT Bombay and MIT alumnus, and Ravindra Jaju, also an IIT Bombay alumnus.It is run by Six Deg Inc., a social collaboration-based learning platform for a university classroom. Yellowdig has tied up with 30 institutions and it’s clients include the University of Pennsylvania, the University of Virginia and Duke University.
Zuppler provides online food ordering service to restaurants. Zuppler’s online ordering technology integrates directly with restaurant’s website and is also available via the the Zuppler Network. User’s can order food for pickup or delivery from the restaurant’s own website or via various dining guides and portals (including Zuppler.com). It was founded in 2008 by Shiva Srinivasan, Zuppler has about 1,600 restaurants using the platform.
SRI Capital is a seed stage investor focused on the “as a service” economy. It use “as a service” loosely to include offerings that may comprise of software, data, analytics, services—anything where the customer pays a subscription amount on a recurring basis for that offering. It invests in US- and India-based firms. It invested in health and fitness app HealthifyMe in June 2015 and backed Hyderabad-based online payment gateway services startup NumberMall in January 2015.