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[Funding Alert] Chaayos Raises $21.5 million in Series B2 Led by Think Investments New funds are expected to be used for expansion of the cafe network, investing in technology and strengthening its teams across all departments

By Tahira Noor Khan

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New Delhi headquartered neo-café chain Chaayos has raised $21.5 million in series B2 round led by Think Capital. The funding round also saw participation from the company's existing investors, including Tiger Global, SAIF Partners, Integrated Capital and Neeraj Arora, Ex-CBO of Whatsapp. The funding was a mix of equity and debt financing.

Founded in 2012 by Nitin Saluja and Raghav Verma, Chaayos has 1.7 million registered guests across 80 cafes spread in eight cities, Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Noida, Gurgaon, Chandigarh and Faridabad.

The company plans to use the funding capital to expand its cafe network, invest in technology and strengthen teams across all departments, the press release said.

Tech Backed Cafes

Chaayos is a neo-café or a technology led cafe chain. Basically, the startup uses technology across domains to improve customer experience. The various technology solutions used by the company include patented IoT (internet of things) chai bots, 80,000+ tech backed chai customisations and the controversial facial recognition technology used for logging in, repeating usual chai orders and making payments without using OTP or one-time-password.

Besides improving customer experience, use of technology has also helped the company in improving their bottom line by up to 5 per cent, claims Chaayos.

Future Plans

Commenting on the latest round of funding, Nitin Saluja, co-founder and CEO, Chaayos said, "The continued confidence of our guests has allowed us to expand our café network at a fast pace and we will end FY20 with nearly 100 Cafés." He added, "We shall endeavour to get to 300 cafes over the course of next 3-4 years. Alongside growing our café network, we will continue to invest heavily into technology and augment teams across all levels."

In its last round in September 2018, Chaayos had secured $20 million from Tiger Global, SAIF Partners, Integrated Capital and Pactolus.

Tahira Noor Khan

Former Junior Features Writer

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