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boAt gets funding from Qualcomm Ventures at estimated valuation of Rs 2,200 crore

Mumbai: Qualcomm Ventures, the investment arm of Qualcomm Inc., a major wireless technology company, has invested in consumer electronics manufacturer BoAt, the company said Friday, without disclosing the financial details.

However, people familiar with the transaction told ET that Qualcomm Ventures invested Rs 50 crore at a valuation of Rs 2,200 crore. Valuation is unchanged from January, when New York-based private equity fund Warburg Pincus acquired a significant minority stake in the wearables firm for $ 100 million.

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However, Qualcomm Ventures will take home a smaller stake, the people said.

The funding will help expand its product portfolio into different geographic areas and strengthen its research and development (R&D) and manufacturing capabilities, the company said. Sources familiar with the matter said boAT views Qualcomm as a strategic partner to leverage its infrastructure and knowledge capital.

“As we enter the next phase of growth and innovation, we look forward to building a relationship with Qualcomm to deepen our R&D capabilities and further expand our efforts to manufacture products in India”, said Sameer Mehta, co-founder of BoAt. He said the company believes the relationship would contribute to increased technology collaboration, faster implementation and product portfolio refinement across price points.

At the time of Warburg’s investment, boAT said it would grow 40% by the end of fiscal year 2021. In the past year, it has doubled its workforce to 150 and built a local R&D unit in Bengaluru. It has also added new categories such as smartwatches to its product portfolio.

Rajen Vagadia, VP and President – Qualcomm India and SAARC, said: “As a technology enabler and investor with a long-standing presence in India, we look forward to being part of BoAt’s growth and strengthening its vision to to deliver world-class products to consumers, not only for India, but also to support their vision of global expansion. ”

The direct-to-consumer (D2C) startup has an 18% share of the true wireless stereo (TWS) market in India, according to data from Counterpoint Research, followed by Mi at 16%, Realme at 12%, JBL at 8 %, and Apple with a 6% market share.

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