Home / Companies / Unicorn India Ventures launches `150 crore fund for early stage start-ups

Mumbai: Mumbai-based Unicorn India Ventures, an early stage investment fund, on Thursday said it has launched its maiden fund worth 150 crore to invest in start-ups. Unicorn, founded by Anil Joshi and Bhaskar Majumdar, received its regulatory approvals in July.

One-third of the investment has come from institutions and the rest from wealthy individuals, the company said. “Our investors include old economy family offices and professionals from the financial service industry including broking businesses," Majumdar said over the phone.

The fund tenure is seven years, in which it is looking to make investments in the range of 60-75 lakh in 30 companies. It will also invest a Series A round up to 5 crore in businesses that would have potential to grow. The fund is looking to close its first tranche of $10 million by next month and will be making 3-4 investments in start-ups this year. The fund will be looking at start-ups in the space of e-commerce enablers, mobile, analytics and cloud-based services.

There have been a total of 77 early stage deals worth $298 million from April to June this year according to data reported by the Venture Intelligence database. Since 2014, angel investors and managing partners with various private equity and venture capital funds have launched their own funds. Angel investor Rehan Yar Khan, launched Orios Ventures, a 300 crore fund in 2014 for early stage investments. Former managing director at Canaan partners Rahul Khanna launched Trifecta capital Partners, a 300 crore venture debt fund. Sandeep Murthy, partner at Sherpalo Ventures, launched Lightbox Ventures.

“Early-stage investing involves a lot of hand holding and involvement with the founders. We spend three months with companies, advising and mentoring before we make a final investment," added Majumdar. Unicorn will have a six-member investing team operating out of Delhi, Mumbai and Bengaluru. The fund has four special advisors on board that include Bharat Banka, founder Aditya Birla Private equity, Manish Choudhary, member of Global Strategy team for Pitney Bowes, D.D. Ganguly, a serial software entrepreneur and Shashikant Chowdhary, Mmanaging director, India for GlobalLogic.

Founders Joshi and Majumdar have been making early stage investments in Indian start-ups in India and U.K. Joshi was heading operations at individual investor groups like Mumbai Angels and Bangalore Angels.

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