The Better India raises Series-A round led by Elevar Equity with participation from TPG Rise
The Better India has just raised its Series A round led by Elevar Equity with participation from TPG Rise (The Rise Fund). What started as an idea to use the internet for large-scale impact, The Better India has grown in the past years to become Asia’s largest content platform for impact — it has changed millions of lives, amplified the social sector in the country and raised millions of rupees for various social causes. While making all this impact, we also turned profitable within the second year of operations — a fact that we as an entire team are very proud of. Some of our impact is here.
The Early Years of Persistence
When we started The Better India in 2008 as a side-project, many media professionals and investors told us to shelve the idea. “No one wants to read positive content” was the common refrain. However, we believed that the common man needed to know what was working in the country — the innovations, the changemakers, the initiatives. We believed that change was possible by mobilizing people towards social causes. And so we persisted and with the help of a few angel investors built an organization that today leads the online impact space and has hundreds of India’s biggest brands working with it to create inspiring and influential content. What started as a side-project received high praise recently with the Prime Minister stating that whenever he gets the chance, he reads The Better India. We’ve grown from 4 to a team of 50.
We are thrilled to have found a set of investors who share our belief that massive impact is indeed possible while building massive businesses. As we continue growing our content platforms (we are in Hindi & Malayalam), we are also building a unique platform for a unique problem. Read on.
There are millions of micro/small/medium enterprises and NGOs and SHGs in the country that make great products — products that, if sold, generate income for low-income groups and/or are great for the environment. These particularly small enterprises lack access to consumer markets and hence do not have predictable income and growth.
Large horizontal e-commerce platforms struggle to help these small enterprises due to the ‘discovery of plenty’ issue. These platforms end up focusing on high-frequency high-demand items — mobile phones, fashion etc.
We aim to help the world discover great products made by these entities. How? By writing about them, bringing them in front of our large audience and thus generating income for them. Products like clay water bottles, sustainable bamboo products, wallets from used tyres, footwear from discarded footwear and more. You can browse these on the early version of our platform here.
By helping these enterprises, we aim to make the world better — better for us, for our community and for the environment.
‘Turning Inspiration into Impact’ has been our guiding force ever since we started. We will continue to leverage the internet and our community in innovative ways to help increase income-levels of low-income communities and marginalised communities. In this context, it is particularly important to note that the work of Elevar Equity and The Rise Fund is extremely relevant to our journey forward.
Elevar Equity, a human-centered venture capital firm, invests in transformative and scalable entrepreneurial ventures focused on communities in India and Latin America.
The Rise Fund is the world’s largest global fund committed to achieving measurable, positive social and environmental outcomes alongside competitive financial returns.
We believe that this year will further cement our vision as the country’s largest impact-driven enterprise — using content, community, commerce — to bring lasting change for people in this country. There are very few organizations that actually drive such change on the ground, and we are really glad to be one of them.
A note of gratitude
All of this wouldn’t have been possible without the continued support of the Independent and Public Spirited Media Foundation and our seed round investors comprising of angels and friends and family.