Angel and seed stage venture capital fund Blume Ventures has announced new investments in online event ticketing site IndianStage, audio travel content provider AudioCompass, robotics & automation firm Systemantics and fresh sea food brand PescaFresh through its quarterly investor report.
It has also disclosed further investment in its portfolio company Tripvillas, a holiday accommodation site. While Systemantics & Tripvillas were syndicate investments, all others were lead investments.
IndianStage is a Bangalore-based online event ticketing platform which focuses on the performing arts segment. Blume Ventures has co-invested in them along with Google India MD Rajan Anandan.
The company offers online ticketing and also conducts events like music concerts, theatre, dance, comedy shows, workshops and others. It currently offers online ticketing for events in 10 Indian cities like Bangalore, Mumbai, Delhi, Pune, Chennai, Ahmedabad and others.
It also has a paid membership service called The Green Room, which claims to offer priority booking & seating, discounts and others. Membership starts at Rs 2,500 and goes up to Rs 25,000.
AudioCompass provides travel guides and audio travel apps for mobile phones. Blume Ventures has co-invested in them along with Cox & Kings promoter family.
The company claims to offer content for more than 100 tourist attractions, with 30 new attractions added every month. Some of the tourist attractions include Agra Fort, Taj Mahal, Bombay Star Home Tour, Mumbai Heritage Tour (Footsteps of the Raj), Khajuraho, Hyderabad’s Salar Jung museum and Sanchi among others.
It currently offers mobile apps for iOS and Android. While the apps are free for download, one has to purchases travel guides through in-app purchases, which are priced at Rs 100 per tourist attraction. It also offers on-site device rentals at various monuments and museums at the ticket counter of the respective destinations and an interactive voice response (IVR) based service called ‘Culture Calls’ for feature phones.
Besides tourist attractions, it has also developed tours of campuses and training facilities for corporates. The company had claimed to have served over 100,000 customers as of May 2013. Do read our interview with AudioCompass founder & CEO Gautam Shewakramani on creating audio guides & their partnerships, marketing and revenue among others.
Blume Ventures has made a syndicate investment in Systemantics, along with Accel Partners and individual angel investors like Ravi Gururaj. It develops robots and custom automation solutions for industries. While the company’s website is under a placeholder, its products page suggests it has developed products like pick and place robots. [Video Demo]
Blume Ventures also made a syndicate investment in the holiday accommodation site Tripvillas, along with the VC firm Neoteny Labs, seed investment firm MENA Venture Investments and other angels.
Tripvillas allows users to find holiday homes on rentals and claims to offer 47,909 holiday homes across 5,347 destinations globally, of which 2,232 properties are in India. One can filter these holiday homes based on location, size, availability and facilities available.
In May 2013, Tripvillas had inked a deal with HomeAway wherein Tripvillas listings were promoted on HomeAway site. However, two months later Homeaway had acquired a majority stake in Tripvilla’s competitor TravelMob.
Other previously disclosed investments made by the fund include:
– Online digital marketplace Instamojo in July 2013
– Online beauty products shop Purplle.com in July 2013.
– Social targeting and ad optimization platform Tookitaki in August 2013.
– Social media products company Kuliza in August 2013.
– An online licensed apparel store VoxPopClothing in November 2013.
– Health video site Homeveda in January 2014.
– Video calling company Turtle Yogi Technologies in January 2014.
Reserve Mode Until 2nd Fund Launch
Blume Ventures says it has invested in 70 companies through its Rs 100 crore fund until now. This includes investments in undisclosed overseas-domiciled companies which were formally brought to the portfolio after requisite SEBI approvals.
The firm is currently in reserve mode, limiting new investments to a minimal number till its second fund which is expected to be launched in May or June 2013. Blume Ventures is planning to raise $50 million through this new fund. The firm says it will be using the remaining money in the first fund for follow-on funding into its portfolio companies.
Other Highlights from the report
– Blume Ventures says six of its portfolio companies have raised Series A investments until now and expects 8-10 Series A investments in 2014.
– Of the six Series A companies, Blume Ventures expects 2-3 companies to raise Series B investment in 2014.
– The firm expects to see 2-3 small acquisitions or exists in 2014. Last year, it had got two exits in form of Adepto (acquired by Blume portfolio company Kuliza in an asset for stock deal in September 2013) and Qubecell (acquired by Boku for cash in November 2013).
– Of the Series A and Series B companies, it expects 1-2 companies to create an aggregate shareholder value of Rs 1,000 crore, which Blume Ventures terms as ‘Blue Swans’ and says can single-handedly return a significant amount of the total fund.