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Cleantech Firm ProKlean Raises Rs 2.5Cr From Chennai Angels, Others

According to reports, Chennai-based ProKlean Technologies Pvt Ltd, which develops clean technology products for various industries, has raised Rs 2.5 crore in angel funding. The money has been raised from Chennai Angels, an IIM alumni group and a strategic American investor for a minority stake.

ProKlean develops chemical-free, bio-degradable formulations, used across tanneries, textile firms and hospitality industry. The funding will be used to expand manufacturing facilities, increase sales & marketing reach and also for product R&D.

Investors from Chennai Angels included Lakshmi Narayanan (Cognizant), Prabhakar Ram (NextGen), Rajeev Mecheri (Mecheri Capital), Gopal Srinivasan (TVS Capital) and Sameer Mehta (Atlas). Besides Mehta from Chennai Angels, Sunil Nikhar (founder of Pyxis Systems) also joined the board of ProKlean as a representative of the IIM alumni group.

VNS Legal and RKRV & Associates acted as the exclusive due diligence advisors for the Chennai Angels on this deal.

ProKlean is currently run by three directors. Dr Sivaram Pillai, who had earlier worked with the Murugappa Group in various senior positions, leads the company as CEO. A PhD in bio-chemistry, he left the Murugappa Group firm EID Parry in 2006 to work with US-based SCD Probiotics. Pillai came back to India in 2009 and started ProKlean with Bala Chandrasekhar, a former HUL executive who looks after the operations. The duo also roped in Vishwadeep Kuila, former CEO of Peepul Capital-backed Oriental Cuisines and marketing head of Reynolds, to look after ProKlean’s marketing. Both Chandrasekhar and Kuila are IIM-A passouts.

The company’s products for the leather and the hospitality industry are already in use while the textile industry product is awaiting certification. ProKlean products, which are eco-friendly and non-toxic, can replace various chemicals which are used in those processes. According to Pillai, these products are priced competitively and are capable of reducing pollution, which is an added advantage for consumers.

ProKlean currently develops its products based on a mother culture it imports from SCD Probiotics, where Pillai worked earlier. The company then licenses its products to the US firm for selling it in overseas markets like Mexico, Turkey, China and the US. Matthew Wood, founder and CEO of SCD Probiotics, is also an investor in this round.

ProKlean is looking to end FY13 with revenues of over Rs 3.5 crore and aims to reach Rs 100 crore in five years, said Pillai.

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