Vertex Ventures backs Indian WhatsApp-based ecommerce startup

ChattyBao , an Indian shopping platform built on WhatsApp, has secured over US$5 million in a seed round co-led by Info Edge Ventures and Vertex Ventures Southeast Asia and India.

7Square Ventures and other angel investors also participated in the round. ChattyBao co-founders Varun Gupta (left) and Kumar Aditya / Photo Credit: ChattyBao ChattyBao was founded earlier this year by former Paytm executives Kumar Aditya and Varun Gupta . The platform aims to provide a complete shopping experience on WhatsApp where users can discover, chat, and order from local merchants.

The startup said it is nurturing the entrepreneurial spirit of local businesses and equipping them to compete with established ecommerce players in the country.

In a bid to strengthen its social commerce push, earlier this year, WhatsApp unveiled a set of new features for merchant partners, helping them cut costs and manage their business accounts better. The messaging app also plans to expand its digital payments service – currently available in India, Brazil, and the US – to more countries globally.

Since SMEs are the backbones of the retail industry in India, “ChattyBao can strengthen their value proposition further and become a catalyst in enabling more customers to come online and transact with the same comfort they already experience in WhatsApp conversations,” said Kanika Mayar , partner at Vertex Ventures Southeast Asia and India.

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