Hudle, a sports tech startup based in Delhi, has raised $1 million in a Series A round led by Inflection Point Ventures, with participation from existing investors Survam Partners and Indian Angel Network.
Hudle, which debuted in 2018, is a mobile app that allows sports enthusiasts to discover and book sports activities. The startup currently allows users to book a variety of 30+ sports at 700+ venues across the country, as well as All Access Passes, which are sport-specific subscriptions that allow players to play their preferred sport across India with a single subscription.
The consumer platform is supplemented by inventory management and invoicing software for sports clubs and venues, allowing them to smoothly manage day-to-day operations.
The funds raised will be used to fuel growth in existing and new geographies, strengthen the business and tech team, marketing, and new product additions, according to the statement.
Suhail Narain (10+ years of experience in sports & experiential marketing, Master’s in Sports Management from the University of Michigan), Arjun Singh Verma (ex-KPMG), and Sonam Taneja lead the passionate founding team of Hudle (Former Tax Lawyer, Ex Sports Manager, Ashoka University).
“Playing a sport is fun, social, and engaging. Kids grow up playing sports but as we grow older, playing becomes difficult due to a lack of proper facilities and playing partners. Our vision is to change this trend and make millions of Indians fitter through sport. We strongly believe in scaling up through collaboration and bringing together all the stakeholders. and are thrilled to welcome IPV on board,” says Suhail Narain, Founder & CEO.
The startup also has sports icons Ajinkya Rahane and Pullela Gopichand as brand ambassadors. Joy Bhattacharjya, former team director of IPL Team Kolkata Knightriders and current CEO of Prime Volleyball league was an early investor in the company.
“Sports should become an integral part of our lives. Being physically active keeps us fit mentally too. We all know this mantra but are unable to imbibe it due to the limited access to sports infrastructure. Hudle is bridging the gap by enabling users to discover & book various sports venues, events and pursue their favourite sport as a hobby or as a fitness activity,” says Vinay Bansal, Founder & CEO, Inflection Point Ventures.
“At IPV, we believe in backing purpose-driven companies who are dedicated to building a sustainable business and fill an existing market gap. We aim to strengthen the company’s expansion plan and help them to scale their corporate services vertical,” Vinay adds.
Hudle’s vision is to enable 100 million Indians to participate in active sports as a way of life by constructing a sports ecosystem for both players and venue owners and providing players with a convenient slot booking system and subscriptions (Hudle All Access Passes).
The global participation sports market is expected to reach $416 billion in the next five years, according to a Research & Markets report. The sports industry is expanding and will continue to see an influx of funds from new sources, increased use of emerging technologies, and a greater emphasis on broader societal issues.