Gemba Capital 2018 Year In Review

Adith Podhar
5 min readJan 2, 2019

Part I — Portfolio

Happy New Year to all !!

2018 was our first full year of operations. Technically we did start from August 2017 but most of our investment thesis evolved as we progressed in 2018. It was a fantastic year which would not have been possible without the people who have been a part of our journey. A special thanks to all of them.

Resicare, our first investment focuses on the affordable home healthcare segment. The home healthcare market is expected to be $6.2 bn by 2020 in India. Despite many players, we feel Resicare has the best team to execute on the ground and have already delivered 1 mn + service hours.

We focused on startups solving India specific problems in a unique way irrespective of whether such a model exists in the US or China. We invested in MyHQ, which is solving the workspace problem for non-funded startups, freelancers and field employees in NCR. MyHQ has strong tech, platform play and a loyal engaged community of members. Currently, MyHQ has 90+ locations in NCR itself.

ClearDekho, our third investment is an offline ‘budget’ optical retail chain in India. It followed the Online 2 Offline model and is growing fast through the franchise route with 36 operational stores. India is the blind capital of the world and the market is hugely underpenetrated especially in tier-II, III and IV cities. ClearDekho added 21 stores in the last 6 months. Post our funding, ClearDekho also raised funds from SOSV-MOX China Accelerator.

Hoi Foods, provides quality and standardized “ready to heat and eat” food under the Hoi brand to in-room dining guests of budget hotels in India and operates cloud kitchens to serve the B2C segment through online delivery partners. Hoi is solving the ‘Food’ problem of budget travelers in a way similar to OYO solving the ‘accommodation’ problem for budget travelers. Hoi is already serving >2500 rooms in NCR alone!

We then invested in Zestl, a Pune based B2B SaaS startup that is building a no-code cognitive automation platform to power complex enterprise workflows. An UC/Stanford alumnus, Hardik has earlier worked on advanced technology development at Apple and Texas Instruments in the Bay Area. Along with him, the Zestl founding team brings in 60+ years of international work experience, with over 30 patents to their name. Their client list includes names like Dominos and the Future Group.

Our sixth investment was Khidki, a hyperlocal vernacular social media app for the small towns of India. In India, culture and interest changes every 100 km hence a platform with hyperlocal content be it video, photo or text is vital to scale. The team has developed proprietary AI based dialect recognition tech which identifies different dialects of Gujarati, Hindi and Rajasthani and the corresponding location of the content. Khidki currently has over 4 lakh users from Gujarat and it recently launched in Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan.

Our next investment in Fintech space is not yet announced. It digitally lends a small proportion of salary as advance to the Emerging Bharat.

Our last committed investment for 2018 is a startup in the SaaS space. It streamlines and automates Business Finance Operations on one unified platform.

If we look at our current portfolio construct, below are the key observations:

a) 88% of the portfolio are 2 founder teams, 13% are > 2 founders and 0% are single founder teams.

b) 25% of the portfolio is B2B, 38% is B2C and 38% is B2B2C deals

c) 63% of the portfolio is pure tech and 38% is tech-enabled businesses.

d) Some of the co-investors in our portfolio companies include Anupam Mittal, Contrarian Drishti, Astarc Ventures, Axilor Ventures, Better Capital, Venture Catalysts, 1Crowd and members of Eagle 10, Lead Angels and Angellist

e) Our current portfolio spans across fintech, consumer internet, retail, Software SaaS and healthtech.

f) Our portfolio has 4 startups from Bangalore, 3 from NCR and 1 from Pune

With 8 investments done/committed, we are ready to take the next plunge from a Family Office to a MicroVC Fund in 2019. Do wish us luck! We will continue to deploy capital in the seed/angel and pre-series A rounds.

A big thank you to all our founders, intermediaries like bankers, lawyers, accounting firms, co-investors, investing platforms and our advisors.

Wishing all a great 2019!

To read part II of this blog, where I talk about our deal flow please click here.


The information set forth herein is not intended to constitute investment advice and under no circumstances should any information provided herein be used or considered as an offer to sell or a solicitation of an offer to buy an interest in any investment fund managed by Gemba Capital. Gemba Capital does not solicit or make its services available to the public. Past performance is not indicative of future performance.

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Adith Podhar

Entrepreneur First | Founder - Gemba Capital | Early stage Investor | Ex PE | Amateur Photographer | Foodie | Traveler |