With an aim to invest in early-stage start-ups, OYO founder and CEO, Ritesh Agrawal has set up a
the firm known as Aroa Ventures that will focus on the growth of businesses in the consumer, technology
and leisure infrastructure sectors.
Aroa Ventures provides growth equity capital to companies with
a proven business model. Aroa ventures will be headed by a founding member of the co-working firm
Innov8, Gaurav Gulati.
Gaurav Gulati is the former Chief Operating Officer of Innov8, which was acquired by Oyo in 2019 for
an estimated Rs 200 crore. Gaurav had also previously co-founded Purist, a retailer for consumer
goods which was later acquired by Cure.fit.
Aroa Ventures, that is based in Singapore is planning to invest between $500,000 to $5 million in
companies with high potential to scale and proven unit economics. It also focuses on companies to
accelerate their growth and to deliver better risk-adjusted returns.
Apart from Agarwal, other startup founders invested in VC investments are Binny Bansal, Flipkart co-founder who launched VC fund 3State Capital and also co-founded xto10x Technologies to help start-ups expand their business.
Digital payments firm Freecharge co-founders Sandeep Tandon and Kunal Shah, also set-up sector
agnostic VC firm Whiteboard Capital in 2016. Kunal Bahl and Rohit Bansal, co-founders of Snapdeal,
have set up Titan Capital for their personal bets. Earlier this month, Paytm CEO Vijay Shekhar
Sharma also reported having set up VSS Investco and VSS Holdings to make personal investments.
Aroa Ventures was registered last year with Ritesh Agrwaral and Thomas Hufnagel as the two
shareholders through Raco Holding company, but later Agrawal got the complete 100% hold in
OYO itself was a product of venture capital investment firms that is DSG Consumer
Partners, Lightspeed, Sequoia and Softbank.
Last year OYO had raised about $1.5 billion through Softbank and RA Hospitality as part of the hospitality startup’s series F funding round.
Due to the challenges that have been posed due to the wake of Coronavirus, Ritesh Agrawal has also
decided to forego his pay for 2020. The leadership team of the company has also voluntarily opted
for pay cuts starting at 25% and going up to 50%. Other start-ups have also started laying off and in
some cases making pay-cuts as they look for ways to curb the economic effect CoVID is causing in