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December 31, 2014

Private Equity investments bounce back by over 47% to $10.9 Billion in 2014

Powered by mega bets on E-Commerce, 2014 is 2nd biggest year for PE investments after 2007

Flipkart, Snapdeal and Olacabs account for 5 of Top 10 investments during ‘14 

After plunging to a four year low in 2013, Private Equity investments in India bounced back by 47.3% during 2014 to touch $10.9 billion (across 436 deals) – the second highest figure ever, behind only the $14.5 billion (across 529 deals) invested in 2007, according to data from Venture Intelligence, a research service focused on private company financials, transactions and valuations. The surge was led by mega deals in Online Services companies - including especially E-Commerce firms – that accounted for almost $4.1 billion (across 106 deals) or 37.6% of the investment pie during the year. (Note: Venture Intelligence's PE data does not include investments in Real Estate.)

Just the top two home grown e-tailers, Flipkart and Snapdeal, collected almost $3 billion between them in 2014. Flipkart, via its Singapore-based holding company, rounded up $1.91 billion across three rounds – starting with a $210 million one in May, jumping to $1 billion in July and topping up with a $700 million round in December. All three deals figured in the Top 10 largest investments for 2014 and helped take the total funding raised by the 2007-founded Flipkart to about $2.7 billion. Apart from return backers – hedge fund Tiger Global, South African media firm Naspers and global multi-family office Iconiq Capital, new investors flocking to Flipkart in 2014 included Singapore’s GIC, Russia’s DST Global, Qatar Investment Authority, hedge funds Steadview Capital and Greenoaks Capital and other traditionally public market oriented investors like T.Rowe Price and Baillie Gifford. With the number of stakeholders in the Singapore-based Flipkart Limited’s roster crossing the 50 mark, the company has filed for conversion into a public limited company. 

Japan’s SoftBank Corp led a $637 million round for Snapdeal to become the biggest investor in the company. In May 2014, Snapdeal had attracted $100 million including from new investors Temasek, PremjiInvest, the typically public markets focused Blackrock, and hedge funds Tybourne and Myriad. This had followed a $134 million raise in February from the company’s existing Venture Capital investors and strategic investor eBay. 

Softbank also led a $210 million round in for online taxi aggregator Olacabs with participation from the company’s first investor - and key Flipkart backer - Tiger Global, new investor Steadview Capital and existing investor, Matrix Partners India.

In contrast, 2013 had witnessed PE investors committing a total of $7.4 billion (across 433 deals) with only Flipkart featuring among the top 10 investments. Including Flipkart’s two rounds - of $200 million and $160 million - Online Services companies had raised $786 million (across 86 deals) or less than 11% of the PE investment pie in 2013.  

2014 witnessed 18 investments of $100 million or more, compared to 15 such deals in 2013.

Average Deal values climbed steadily with each passing quarter during 2014 - beginning with $2.2 billion (across 129 deals) in Q1 to end with almost $4.1 billion (across 100 deals) in Q4.

Top Investments

In February, Canadian pension funds - Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) and Caisse de depot et placement du Quebec (CDPQ) – had teamed up with Omani sovereign wealth fund State General Reserve Fund (SGRF) – to invest INR 2,000 crore (about $323 million) in L&T IDPL, the infrastructure development arm of publicly listed engineering firm Larsen & Toubro. The BPO industry witnessed two significantly large transactions during 2014 including TPG’s acquisition of a 34.5% stake in Sutherland Global in October (that included a primary infusion and buyout of stakes held by existing PE investors) and the $260 million January buyout of the Aditya Birla Group’s BPO unit Minacs by CX Partners and Capital Square Partners.

Warburg Pincus (WP) wrote its largest cheque for the year – of $200 million – to jewelry retailer Kalyan Jewelers. Temasek, which has also been investing in India for over a decade now, revisited the pharmaceuticals sector with a $144 million cheque to buyout ChrysCapital’s stake in Intas Pharmaceuticals.

By Industry

With 224 investments worth about $5.8 billion, Information Technology and IT-Enabled Services (IT & ITES) companies topped in terms of both investment value (53% of the pie) and volume (52%) during 2014. 

Led by the Intas Pharma and Laurus Labs investments, the Healthcare & Life Sciences industry was the next largest destination for PE investments in 2014 attracting $874 million across 44 transactions. Pharmaceuticals firms accounted for six out of the top investments in HLS during 2014. 

The BFSI industry came in next attracting $752 million across 32 transactions with the $100 million investment led by TPG in microfinance company Janalakshmi as the top investment followed by Apax Partners’ $83.2 million in listed non-banking lender Cholamandalam. 

By Stage

Late Stage deals accounted for 50% of the investments in value terms and about 20% in volume terms during 2014, the Venture Intelligence research showed. Venture Capital investments accounted for 56% in volume terms and 10% in value terms. Acquisition of minority stakes in listed companies (“PIPEs”) accounted for 8% in volume terms and 7% in value terms. Despite the $260 million buyout of Minacs BPO, buyouts in total constituted just 6% of the pie in value terms (13% in volume terms) during 2014.

By Region

Companies based in South India (which attracted $4.8 billion across 158 deals) accounted for almost 44% of the PE investment pie in value terms (36% by volume) during 2014. West India-based companies ($3.2 billion across 141 investments) followed with a 29% share (32% by volume). Companies in North India attracted investments worth almost $2.4 billion across 102 deals (22% by value and 23% by volume).

Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.


December 23, 2014

Deal Alert: IDG invests in mobile gaming company Playsimple

IDG Ventures India has invested in PlaySimple, a mobile social gaming company through its seed fund program. The company is focused on mobile games in the trivia, word and puzzle categories. Yezdi Lashkari, a former executive, at Zynga, also participated as an angel investor as part of the round. The money will be used to build a portfolio of mobile casual games targeting the global markets. Playsimple also plans to increase its team from six to 20 and is looking to hire game designers and UI experts.  

Source: Yourstory.com

Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

December 22, 2014

Deal Alert: Kyron unveils 3rd batch

Kyron Global Accelerator plans has announced its third batch of startups, most of which come from the enterprise or media space including: 

Cubito: A transportation logistics Automation startup, infusing intelligence into business processes involving transportation. 

Xpense Manager: A Software as a Service company addressing traditional problems in areas of business productivity & finance domain by devising applications which are more user focused than process driven. 

Eywa Media Innovations: Eywa Media is a product that would make TV watching interactive and fun. 

Viamagus: A SaaS product startup that helps simplify the way businesses and individuals build & maintain their online presence and do business online.

Cashkumar: An online platform that provides the best rates for foreign currency exchange in Bangalore, Mumbai and Pune.

Adwyze: A marketing optimization platform, which allows marketers to improve the performance of their marketing budgets.

Source: Yourstory.com
 
Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

December 18, 2014

Deal Alert: Mumbai Angels invests in retail tech co Primaseller

Delhi-based retail technology startup Primaseller has raised funding from Mumbai Angels led by member Dr.Aniruddha Malpani with participation from US-based tech entrepreneur Kishore Ganji and others. The startup provides software as a service platform that helps retailers grow their business by allowing them to manage both brick and mortar stores as well as sell on multiple online channels. It will use the funds to increase the number of online channels offered and build a stronger customer base.

Source: Economic Times

Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

Deal Alert: Contrarian Drishti leads investment in yellow-and-black taxi aggregator BookMyCab

Yellow-and-black taxis aggregator BookMyCab has raised a Series A round of funding led by impact investment firm Contrarion Drishti managed Contrarian Vridhhi Fund-I. The funding round also saw participation from BookMyCab's existing backers Mumbai Angels and YourNest Angel Fund. The company, which currently operates about 3,000 cabs in Mumbai, will use the proceeds to expand its operations in the northern and southern parts of the country. It recently acquired Hyderabad-based online taxi booking service provider CabOnClick. The company is also in talks with other venture capital firms to raise its next round of funding. 

 
Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

December 15, 2014

Deal Alert: Unitus Seed Fund invests in education start-ups Curiositi, Cue Learn

Seattle and Bangalore-based Unitus Seed Fund has invested in education-focused start-ups Curiositi and Cue Learn, a month after it roped in Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates and Michael and Susan Dell Foundation as its anchor investors. Founded in 2013 by former Wipro executives Vinod Abraham and Manoj Thandassery, 

Bangalore-based Curiositi partners with schools to affordably transform their science curriculum. Curiositi maps the curriculum to its port folio of over 80 science activity kits and delivers these kits to help students explore activities relevant to them. New Delhi-based Cue Learn provides after-school learning programs for maths and English. The year-old startup, founded by Manan and Jagjit Khurma, has over 25 learning centres and will use the new funds to expand operations across states and add to its product line. 

 
Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

Deal Alert: Mumbai Angels, others invest in movie sharing app maker Vliv

Vliv, a mobile video tech start-up, has raised seed funding from Mumbai Angels Network and a group of senior executives of technology companies such as Manish Dalal of Verisign, Srini Raghavan of Scientific Games and Pari Natarajan of Zinnov. Vliv makes the app that comes with all the tools needed to create personal movies and share them. Vliv, which has offices in Santa Clara, CA (USA) and Delhi, will use the funds to expand its footprint and launch its next video app simultaneously in over 15 global languages. Vaibhav Suri co-founded Vliv two years ago along with his Yahoo colleagues Ashish Chadha and Kiran Kulkarni. 

 
Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

December 14, 2014

Deal Alert: Utthishta picks 9% in alumni portal Vaave

Utthishta Yekum Fund, a Hyderabad-based seed fund, has invested INR 25 lakh to pick a 9% stake in the start-up Vaave promoted by Coherendz India Pvt Ltd. Vaave helps educational institutions build exclusive networking portals for their alumni. About 50 institutions have been using the product to connect with their old students. Vaave also offers a placement and training portal, online events registration and merchandise store. 

Source: Business Line
 
Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

December 09, 2014

Deal Alert: KITVEN leads Rs.3 Cr investment in IT Services firm Avekshaa

Bangalore-based IT services firm Avekshaa Technologies has raised about INR 3 crore ($500,000) from a clutch of investors, including Karnataka government's KITVEN fund and ex-Infosys CFO V Balakrishnan. The company, founded by former senior executives of Infosys, will use the funds to target the US market and develop technology. The company, currently valued at $8 million (about INR 48 crore) will also be entering the Australian market.

Avekshaa offers software modelling as a service and works with teams to optimise software during development. The company has 18 paying customers, including ICICI Lombard, IndusInd Bank, and HDFC. It expects $2 million (about INR 12 crore) in revenue this fiscal. 


Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

December 08, 2014

Deal Alert: Sequoia invests in local retail delivery firm Grofers

Gurgaon-based Grofers which has developed an app that helps customers get goods delivered from shops around them, has raised funding from Sequoia Capital India. Founded by Saurabh Kumar and Albinder Dhindsa, Grofers has 200+ people and has expanded to Mumbai and Bangalore. The company has tied up with over 150 merchants, processes close to 33,000 orders every month and generates 20 new leads per outlet every month. 

Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

Deal Alert: Bridge Capital invests Rs. 2.8 Cr in talent hire firm Youth4work

Delhi-based Youth4work, a start-up offering pre-assessed talent for-hire to companies, has raised INR 2.8 crore in bridge capital from Aurum Equity Partners, Global Asia Partners and UK-based angel investor Dan Sandhu. Founded by Rachit Jain in 2012, Youth4Work offers a platform where individuals showcase their talent and skills in which they are tested and ranked. The company has 5 lakh users and aims to reach one million users in the next eight months. It will use the funding for enhancing marketing, user experience and the team. The company's user base spans to 250 cities across India, with a network of 5,400 colleges and 9,000 registered recruiters. Its clients include Microsoft, Adobe, Mahindra and Aon Hewitt. 

 
Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

Deal Alert: CIIE, IIM-A alumni invest in low-priced sanitary pads maker Aakar

The Centre for Innovation Incubation and Entrepreneurship (CIIE) at the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad (IIM-A) has led an investment in Aakar Innovations, a maker of compostable sanitary pads. The round received participation from Artha Platform, a philanthropy community. Aakar’s sanitary pads are produced and sold by women entrepreneurs in their own villages. So far, around 22 machines have been sold across India of which 15 are already operational. The rest will be functional by mid-December. 

 
Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

November 29, 2014

Why Lightspeed said yes to mobile dating app Vee

Extracts from a post on the Lightspeed Ventures India blog (emphasis mine):

Traditionally, young Indian women and men have struggled to meet new and like-minded people owing to various socio-cultural constructs. Consequently, most social interactions are limited to friends and family. Online dating, while promising, could not solve this problem. Fake profiles, in-appropriate behavior, cumbersome matching process, low internet penetration were some of the key challenges that prevented online platforms to flourish.
...Vee leverages the power of mobile along with a product approach that is entirely focused on women. Through features such as anonymous browsing, male loyalty enforcement (limited simultaneous connections), abuse reporting – Vee places the power in the hands of women with an aim to become a trustworthy platform for them. In addition, mobile based hyper-local elements enable instant and relevant matching.
Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

November 24, 2014

Deal Alert: Rajan Anandan, Patni Bros, other angels invest Rs 5-Cr in Aureus Analytics

Singapore- and Mumbai-based financial analytics firm Aureus Analytics has raised over Rs 5 crore ($850,000) in an angel round of funding led by Steven Sule, partner in investment firm Naste Advisors with participation from Rajan Anandan and Nirvana Venture founders Amit and Arihant Patni. Murugappa Group scion Arun Venkatachalam also participated in the round, which was raised through deal-making platform LetsVenture, whose co-founder Shanti Mohan is also an investor in Aureus Analytics. 

Aureus, founded last year by former BFSI software specialists Anurag Shah, Ashish Tanna and Nitin Purohit, has an R&D team in Mumbai. The company provides predictive analytics and big data ready platforms for insurance companies and banks. 

 
Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

November 23, 2014

How Piramals cracked the Private Equity in Real Estate puzzle

From the Forbes India profile:
Given the scope of its services, while all realty funds have a takeover clause in their contracts, Piramal Fund Management has the actual capability to do so if a developer reneges on his commitment. Take, for instance, the fact that no other fund offers construction finance or has funds for specific situations like the apartment fund or the Mumbai Redevelopment Fund.  
As a result, Piramal Fund Management has Rs 12,000 crore to invest in real estate across the country. It helps that Piramal Enterprises is flush with funds and has over Rs 4,000 crore of investment riding on the venture.   
...This is particularly relevant since, as Jijina points out, work doesn’t end once the money is lent. It is important to track the investment, he says, because, for instance, the telltale signs of a default with a developer start to show far before the actual non-payment issue crops up. For instance, if cement is being diverted from one project to another, Jijina expects his employees on the ground to communicate that fact. Or if a developer is not honouring his commitments to suppliers, that must be reported back too.
Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

Deal Alert: Chennai Angels leads Rs.6-Cr investment in jewellery e-tailer Velvetcase

Mumbai-based online designer jewellery marketplace Velvetcase has raised more than $1 million in a funding round led by Chennai Angels. Jacob Kurian, partner at PE firm New Silk Route; Arihant Patni, cofounder of Nirvana Ventures, and Jerry Rao, former CEO of MphasiS, also participated. Velvetcase also allows customers to send their own designs, which are then converted into the final piece of jewellery. 

 
Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

November 19, 2014

Deal Alert: Flipkart founders invest in gaming start-up MadRat Games

Flipkart founders Sachin Bansal and Binny Bansal, have made an investment in an offline games start-up MadRat Games. The other investors who have participated in the funding round of about $1 million (about Rs 6.2 crore) include the founders of IT outsourcing firm GlobalLogic - Rajul Garg, Sanjay Singh, Manoj Agarwala and Tarun Upadhyay. MadRat, founded in 2010, started out by launching a Hindi word game Aksharit. The firm, which distributes its products primarily through offline stores, plans to use the funds for branding, marketing and expansion. Its existing investors Blume Ventures and First Light Ventures did not participate in this round. 

The company started by IIT graduates Rajat Dhariwal, Manuj Dhariwal and Madhumita Halder has launched over 70 board games, puzzles and toys. 

 
Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

Deal Alert: Blume invests Rs 3-Cr in online travel info services firm RailYatri

Blume Ventures has led a Rs.3 crore investment round in Noida-based Stelling Technologies, which owns and operates web and mobile app RailYatri.in. The company had earlier raised funding from Ujama Ventures, a Silicon Valley-based angel investment firm. Proceeds from the latest round will be used to grow the technology platform as well as for marketing initiatives. 

Founded by Manish Rathi, Kapil Raizada and Sachin Saxena in 2011, RailYatri is a web and mobile-based tool that provides consumers rail travel-related information, including, live train status. Its monetisation model is based on taxi bookings and allowing customers to order food on the go. It has tie-ups with taxi services firms across 30 cities and food vendors across 300 stations. 

 
Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

November 16, 2014

Deal Alert: Villgro invests in 7 new startups

Social enterprise incubator Villgro has invested in seven start-up taking its incubation portfolio to 10 companies. Kamal Kisab, Flybird Innovations, VectorDoc, SustainEarth, SkillTrain, MicroX Labs and Bempu, all early-stage companies, have secured funding in the range of Rs 10-15 lakh. All seven start-ups have prototypes of products that will be ready for the market over the next six-nine months. 

 
Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

Fund Alert: Bill Gates invests in Unitus Seed Fund

Bill Gates has made a personal investment in impact investment fund Unitus Seed Fund. Unitus invests in India through two funds — Unitus Seed Fund India, a Sebi-registered venture capital fund, and Unitus Seed Fund LP, an offshore venture capital fund. Gates' investment has been made in the offshore fund. The co-founder of Microsoft has joined VC investor Vinod Khosla and a group of Seattle-area techies in backing Unitus Seed Fund. 

Source: Economic Times

Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

November 13, 2014

Deal Alert: Online clothing brand VoxPop raises Rs.6-Cr in fresh funding

Web-only merchandising brand VoxPop Clothing has raised INR 6 crore ($1 million) led by existing investor Blume Ventures. The funds would be utilised to increase product category in higher margin products, ramp up team and widen brand partnerships. The online portal develops and retails limited edition T-shirts in partnership with global and domestic entertainment and sports brands like Disney, Marvel and Mumbai City Football Club. Blume along with other investors had made a $400,000 (INR 2.4 crore) investment in the company last year.

 
Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

Deal Alert: YourNest, Udaan Angel Partners invest in online ads firm NLPCaptcha

Simpli5d Technologies, which operates digital ad platforms like NLPCaptcha, NLPVideo and NLPMobile, has raised seed funding led by Your Nest Angel Fund with participation from Udaan Angel Partners. The funds would be primarily used for building the team, product & infrastructure enhancement and expanding operations to new geographies. Rammohan Sundaram, CEO - IbiboAds at ibibo Group, had joined the company's board in March 2013, regulatory filings reveal. 

Source: Nextbigwhat
 
Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

Deal Alert: USF invests in e-marketplace operator for mini-trucks Blowhorn

Unitus Seed Fund has led the seed round investment in Bangalore-based Blowhorn, an online marketplace for last mile logistics. Blowhorn offers a tech platform connecting owners of mini-trucks to consumers who want to move goods. Blowhorn’s technology is currently being offered in Bangalore and can used by both consumers and by truck owners & drivers, to move goods or household possessions around the city. 

Source: Nextbigwhat.com

Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

November 12, 2014

"Incremental reforms will push up growth, but fail the youth": Former Chief Economic Adviser Shankar Acharya

Writing in Business Standard, former chief economic adviser to the government Shankar Acharya has evaluated the notable economic and financial developments during the first six months of Modi Sarkaar. Extracts:
Both the July Budget and subsequent developments have made plain this government's aversion to attempting "big bang reforms" through legislative amendments to populist entitlement laws (rural employment, food security, education), the onerous new land acquisition act, the Indira Gandhi vintage, job-destroying central labour laws or even the notorious, retrospective "Vodafone amendment". However, since the disappointing July Budget, clear signs of a pragmatic, incremental approach to policy improvements have emerged.
...Will incrementalism work? That's the big question. As Zhou Enlai reportedly said about the success of the French Revolution, it's too early to tell. One has also to ask whether there really is an alternative? The so-called "big bang reforms" of the early 1990s relied more on administrative measures (within the framework of extant legal authority) than on legislative changes. The latter are always more challenging for a government, especially when the ruling party is far short of a majority in the Rajya Sabha. One can also take hope from Mr Jaitley's recent reported statements that where legislative amendments are deemed essential (as perhaps in the case of the land acquisition act), they will be vigorously pursued.
My guess is that this multi-strand, incrementalist approach could achieve quite a lot. Economic growth may rise from 5-5.5 per cent this year to 6-6.5 per cent in 2015-16 and perhaps cross seven per cent by 2016-17. But such improvement will not yield the pace of job creation that the "youth bulge" requires. For that we need a more urgent and focused dismantling of constraints to labour-intensive manufacturing, whether they be labour laws, infrastructure deficiencies, foreign trade restrictions or skill shortages.
Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

Deal Alert: Kalaari Capital leads Series A funding for online payments firm Instamojo

Kalaari Capital is leading the Series A funding for Mumbai-based Instamojo with participation from existing investors Blume Ventures and 500Startups. Two-year-old Instamojo helps small business owners, like private tutors and office lunch service operators, collect payment directly from their customers by sharing a link through their website, social media and mobile channels such as SMS or WhatsApp.


 
Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

Deal Alert: Outbox Ventures, angels invest $400-K in travel site Tripoto

Travel community portal Tripoto has raised seed level funding of $400,000 led by Outbox Ventures with participation from Palaash Ventures and angel investors. Tripoto provides a platform for travellers to share and discover travel itineraries & stories, plan their trips, upload travel photos and maps, write reviews and connect with like-minded individuals. Angel investors that participated in this round include Kunal Bahl and Rohit Bansal – Founders of Snapdeal; Sachin Bhatia – Founder, Makemytrip; Shanti Mohan – Founder, LetsVenture; Nikunj Jain – Founder, Inoxapps; Arvind Vohra – Director, Gionee India and Romi Mahajan. 

Tripoto was founded in 2013 by ISB alumni Michael Lyngdoh and Anirudh Gupta. The website claims around 300,000 monthly unique visitors and over 650,000 unique page views.

 
Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

Deal Alert: Nexus Venture Partners invests in SDN Analytics company Arkin Net

Arkin Net is coming out of stealth mode with $7 million in funding, led by Nexus Venture Partners,to revolutionize the Software-Defined Networking (SDN) market – projected to be $8B by 2018. Arkin Net is building the industry’s first multi-vendor SDN operations platform that will transform how enterprises operate their software-defined datacenters. With Google-like ease-of-use, organizations will have an entirely new way to search, view and share operational data without spending significant time or money on retraining their staff. 

Enterprises moving to software-defined datacentersface a big challenge

As organizations adopt a software-defined datacenter strategy, they are virtualizing their networks.The operational visibility required to successfully maintain these new software-defined networks is non-existent; the transition from initial deployment to day-to day operations is the biggest challenge. IT departments quickly realize that they are missing the right solution and will need to spend vast amounts of money on retooling and retraining. The overall approach to network operations is stuck in the old command prompt world; it’s time for a new way – a better, smarter, faster way. 

Enter Arkin Net with a consumer approach to an enterprise problem

Google changed the way you look for information, Twitter changed the way you get your news alerts and Pinterest changed how you share - why not apply these simple consumer principles to enterprise software? With a consumer approach, the Arkin Net platform will enable enterprises to analyze, visualize and share operational data as easily as a Google search. This fresh approach brings unprecedented visibility across the physical and virtual layers, breaking the traditional IT silos. 

“At Arkin Net we live by one guiding principle - make software-defined datacenter operations simple and effortless, regardless of the vendor or strategy a customer has chosen,” said Shiv Agarwal, CEO and Co-Founder of Arkin Net. “With networking evolving and network operations stuck in the past, a truly transformational approach is needed. And to realize this, we have assembled a diverse, highly skilled team of datacenter, networking, big data and consumer design experts. The excitement is real and the momentum we are seeing from our initial customers validates our approach and belief.” Arkin Net is testing its groundbreaking solution with several large enterprise customers, and is refining its platform to prepare for a product launch. 

"As we introduce SDN into our own and our customer’s data centers, physical and virtual visibility is important," said Dr. Masahisa Kawashima, Vice-President at NTT i3.“Arkin Net is vital to our datacenter strategy and willchange the way networks are analyzed, visualized and operated in the future.” 

The funding round was led by Nexus Venture Partners, with participation from industry veterans including, B.V. Jagadeesh (Ex-CEO NetScaler and Nutanix Investor), Alan Cohen (Chief Commercial Officer of Illumio, Ex-VP Nicira) and Semil Shahof Haystack Fund. 

“Software-defined networks are core to the evolution of software-defined datacenters (SDDC). Arkin Net's data driven approach subsumes the inherent complexities and brings in consumer grade simplicity to SDDC operations,” said Jishnu Bhattacharjee, Managing Director at Nexus Venture Partners. “We are thrilled to have partnered with the Arkin Net team to help build a seminal company unlocking the power of next generation data centers.” 

About Arkin Net

Arkin Net is removing complexity and modernizing the operations of software-defined datacenters. With a modern consumer approach, the Arkin Net multi-vendor SDN operationsplatform operates seamlessly across virtual and physical layers,breaking traditional IT silos and providing unprecedented visibility. Based in Mountain ViewCA and Pune India, Arkin Net was founded by Virtualization and Big Data Experts and is backed by Nexus Venture Partners as well as several industry luminaries. For more information or to receive updates, please visit us at www.arkin.net or send e-mail to press@arkin.net. Follow us on twitter at @arkinnet. 

About Nexus Venture Partners

Nexus Venture Partners is India’s leading venture capital fund, with offices in India and Silicon Valley. Nexus team consists of entrepreneurs who have founded and scaled large global companies. The team has invested in a variety of companies leading to numerous successful public offerings and M&A transactions. It has over $600mn under management with an active portfolio of over 50 companies across Technology, Internet, Media, Consumer, and Business Services sectors. The Nexus team plays an active role in helping entrepreneurs and management teams build market leading businesses. Nexus partner companies include Cloud.com (acquired by Citrix), Gluster (acquired by Red Hat), Komli, Pubmatic, DimDim (acquired by Salesforce), Snapdeal.com, Netmagic (acquired by NTT Com), Unmetric, ScaleArc. 


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November 11, 2014

Deal Alert: Bookmycab acquires Hyderabad's CabonClick.com

Mumbai-based Bookmycab.com has acquired Hyderabad-based CabonClick.com, an fellow online taxi booking service provider. The acquisition gives Bookmycab access to over 150 cabs. Bookmycab plans to increase the number up to 1,000 in a span of six months.

Source: Business Standard


Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

November 07, 2014

Selling a Rs.400 bulb for Rs.10 and other Brilliant Ideas to Reduce the Fiscal Deficit

Dr. Ajay Shah has timely and extremely well argued post on the government's plans to subsidise LED bulbs costing Rs.400 to be sold for Rs.10! Hopefully the decision makers will take note and switch off this yet-another-money-sucker-in-making proposal before it, well, sees light of the day. Extracts from Dr. Shah's post:
The guiding question, in all design of government, should be: What's the market failure? I am not able to see a market failure in the working of the market for LED bulbs.
...Energy efficiency is just one part of economic efficiency. An LED lamp is a big up front payment and then a stream of gains in the future. Whether the LED lamp is worth putting in depends on (a) The magnitude of each gain (i.e. how much you use that lamp) and (b) The discount rate. If the interest rate is high, it will make sense to buy a Tungsten bulb instead. 
...we should be hard headed in how we thinking about what government does. Most of what government in India does is not the job of government; most of what government ought to do in India is not being done. The rocket science that we require in India is the great organising principle of the market economy -- the Bond-Currency-Derivatives Nexus.
Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

November 06, 2014

Why Everyone & His Uncle Likes Doing Dr.Raghuram Rajan's Job

Every time a monetary policy review is round the corner (like now), everybody from the Finance Minister to twitter-friendly industrialists decide to front run Dr.Rajan to get media attention. In a new column titled "Celebrity central bankers" Prof. Kenneth Rogoff, who like Dr. Rajan is a former chief economist of the IMF, says "much discussion of central-bank pronouncements and decisions grossly exaggerates their economic significance" and highlights some vested interests that benefit from the hoopla. Extracts (emphasis mine):
For starters, the public perception that central bankers are omniscient makes them an attractive whipping boy for politicians. Moreover, the digital revolution in media has elevated the role of business news, one of the few profit centres for print and broadcast journalism in many countries. Central bankers' pronouncements are of interest to businesspeople - especially in the financial sector - and businesspeople are of interest to advertisers.
Finally, and perhaps least appreciated, is the fact that central-bank policy pronouncements are almost unique in having clear and predictable effects on financial markets, at least in the very short run (which can be a day or less)..And with trillions of dollars swirling around global financial markets, this predictability creates a fat target, with investors willing to make massive bets when they are pretty sure they are right, even if the profit for each dollar is small.
...It is not as if they change interest rates all of the time. Nor have they developed new, more robust models for analysing the economy. On the contrary, major central banks' growth and inflation forecasts in the years since the financial crisis have consistently overestimated both growth and inflation - and by wide margins.
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Deal Alert: Paypal Start Tank to incubate two new start-ups

PayPal India has selected two new tech start-ups - Clockwork Interviews Pvt Ltd and Demach Software India Pvt Ltd - for its ‘Start Tank’ Incubation Center in Chennai from among 11 other startups that presented their business pitch at the Start Tank Incubation Challenge final on October 31, 2014. The selection was organized as part of PitchFest in partnership with The Indus Entrepreneurs (TiE) Chennai. Clockwork Interviews is a hiring analytics company. Demach Software is the maker of Konotor, an user-engagement solution for mobile apps. 

Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

Deal Alert: POPxo.com secures INR 3 Cr from Rajan Anandan, Chennai Angels, others

Google India Head Rajan Anandan, Chennai Angels (represented by CaratLane’s Mithun Sancheti), Hussein Kkanji and others have invested INR 3 crore in POPxo.com, a 7-month old digital lifestyle website focused on women. Started by Priyanka Gill, a lifestyle journalist and Namrata Bostrom, a management consultant, POPxo claims to have crossed more than a million users and gets more than 4 million page views monthly. It is currently run by a team of 10 women based out of Delhi and Mumbai. 

Source: Yourstory.com
 
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November 04, 2014

Deal Alert: Kalaari leads $2-M Series A for real estate portal Grabhouse

Grabhouse, the property search and listings site owned by Mumbai-based Cryptopy Technologies, is raising $2 million in a Series A round of funding led by Kalaari Capital. Seed stage investor India Quotient will participate in the round.

From the Venture Intelligence PE Deal database: India Quotient had invested in Grabhouse in Nov-13 and Jul-14. 

 
Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

Deal Alert: Nexus invests in big-data powered marketing SAAS company: Blueshift

Blueshift Labs, a big data-powered marketing SaaS company, today announced that it has raised a $2.6 million Series-Seed round led by New Enterprise Associates (NEA) and Nexus Venture Partnerswith participation from angel investors including Tim Kopp (former CMO of ExactTarget), Neil Tolaney(Personalization Mall.com and former investor at Technology Crossover Ventures), and Anand Rajaramanand Venky Harinarayan (founders of Kosmix, @WalmartLabs, Junglee and MilliwaysVentures). 

Blueshift’s Predictive Marketing Automation software enables ecommerce marketers to convert visitors into repeat buyers and increase activation& retention rates. By using Blueshift, marketers can easily create behaviorally targeted campaigns across multiple channels including email, Display RTB and mobile push notifications. By abstracting away heavy-duty data science into actionable intelligence, Blueshift helps marketers zoom in on the right customers with the highest purchase intent, and helps craft the right combination of products and promotions for each user.

The prevalence of data-driven marketing is undeniable. According to Gartner, CMOs are projected to spend more on IT than CIOs by 2017. “Blueshift’s mission is to enable marketers to use the power of big fast data to build deeper relationships with their customers,” said Vijay Chittoor, co-founder & CEO of Blueshift. “Customers are interacting with brands and e-tailers across multiple digital touchpoints and CMOs are increasingly realizing the need to develop unified cross-channel communication with their users.” 

Blueshift has demonstrated strong results with beta customers like Naturebox, an Internet Retailer 500 company. “Blueshift has become an essential partner for us in improving retention & activation rates. With a very easy integration, we are able to run multiple automated campaigns on email & Display RTB, all powered by Blueshift's segmentation,” said Kenneth Chen, co-founder & CMO of Naturebox. “We are seeing upto 148 percenthigher conversion rates when we use Blueshift’s predictive intelligence in our campaigns. Blueshift truly feels like a product built for marketers by marketers.” 

The Blueshift team is comprised of an experienced group of marketers who led the development of platforms that drove $3 billion in gross annual sales at Walmart &Groupon; they have a deep background in applying big data to help brands and e-tailers engage with their customers. 

“We are thrilled about the opportunity to partner with the team as they pioneer Predictive Marketing Automation for e-commerce,” said Kittu Kolluri, general partner at NEA. 

"Blueshift's data driven workflow automation vastly simplifies the complexities that B2C marketers are facing with explosion of data and proliferation of channels," says Jishnu Bhattacharjee, managing director at Nexus Venture Partners. 

About Blueshift Labs

San Francisco-based Blueshift Labs is the leader in Multichannel Predictive Marketing Automation for ecommerce. Using the power of behavioral targeting and predictive analysis, Blueshift enables ecommerce marketers to convert visitors to their site and app into repeat buyers. The Company is funded by prominent venture capital and angel investors, including New Enterprise Associates, Nexus Venture Partners & Great Oaks VC. 

About NEA 

New Enterprise Associates, Inc. (NEA) is a global venture capital firm focused on helping entrepreneurs build transformational businesses across multiple stages, sectors and geographies. With approximately $13 billion in committed capital, NEA invests in technology and healthcare companies at all stages in a company’s lifecycle, from seed stage through IPO. The firm's long track record of successful investing includes more than 195 portfolio company IPOs and more than 320 acquisitions since its founding in 1977. In the U.S., NEA has offices in Menlo Park, CA; Boston, MA; New York, NY; Chicago, IL; and the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area. In addition, New Enterprise Associates (India) Pvt. Ltd. has offices in Bangalore and Mumbai, India and New Enterprise Associates (Beijing), Ltd. has offices in Beijing and Shanghai, China. For additional information, visit www.nea.com. 

About Nexus Venture Partners 

Nexus Venture Partners is a leading Venture Capital firm with over $600mn under management, and an active portfolio of over 50 companies across technology, Internet, media, consumer, and business services sectors. The team has invested in a variety of companies leading to numerous successful public offerings and M&A transactions. Nexus portfolio companies include Cloud.com, Gluster, Pubmatic, DimDim, helpshift, 0xdata, Elastic Box, Snapdeal.com, Netmagic, Druva and Unmetric. To learn more about Nexus Venture Partners, visit:www.nexusvp.com. 

Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

November 03, 2014

Deal Alert: Vishal Gondal invests in Flipsicle

KK Raghava founded Flipsicle, a New York-based startup focused on creating a new kind of social network, has attracted $2 million in angel funding from 10-12 investors, including Vishal Gondal, founder and CEO of technology and fitness firm, GoQii, Neeraj Arora of Whatsapp, and Kleiner Perkins' design partner John Maeda. The venture wants to build a social network that brings together different perspectives on a variety of subjects. It does that by allowing users to ask questions and respond to them with pictures. 

 
Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

Deal Alert: Khosla incubates start-up to enable bank transactions via kirana stores

Khosla Labs, launched by investor Vinod Khosla, has incubated a technology startup to drive financial inclusion Novopay Solutions in Bangalore under the guidance of Srikanth Nadamuni. Novopay is a mobile payment company that uses the Aadhaar biometric scanner to allow people to conduct banking transactions from neighborhood shops. Novopay has launched services in New Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata and Bangalore, and plans to offer them across the country. 


Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

October 30, 2014

Deal Alert: Indian Angel Network invests in Inthree

Inthree, which operates a rural distribution network, has attracted investment from the Indian Angel Network. The funding will be principally used to fuel Inthree’s evolution into a complete rural consumer company with a strong sourcing and technology backbone. The company is currently concentrating on south India. IAN’s Ashvin Chaddha , who co-led the investment, will join the Inthree board. 

 
Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

Deal Alert: Dell Foundation invests Rs.12-Cr in virtual classroom firm Edutel

Michael & Susan Dell Foundation (MSDF) has invested INR 12.4 crores in Edutel Technologies, a Bangalore-based provider of virtual classrooms for students in government and low-fee private schools. The company aims to help high school students from low-income backgrounds to perform well in competitive examination for professional courses / college admissions and also provide vocational education. The investment will help Edutel scale it's learning solution to underserved schools in India.

J. Sagar Associates (JSA) comprising of Partners – Sajai Singh & Gerald Manoharan; and Associate – Vishnu Nair advised and assisted Edutel in connection with the equity investment. MSDF was advised by AZB & Partners. Unitus Capital was the financial advisor on this transaction. 

Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

October 29, 2014

Deal Alert: Aspada invests Rs.11-Cr in education firm Xamcheck

Aspada Investment Company has made a commitment of INR 11 Crore ($1.8 million) to Xamcheck, a third-party assessment, test design, and feedback solution for K-12 schools in India. Xamcheck was incubated within Policy Innovations, an educational consultancy founded by the team in 2009. Aspada’s investment will be invested in the backend technology while also focusing on achieving scale in bringing Xamcheck to the thousands of underserved K-12 schools in India. 
 
Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

October 28, 2014

Deal Alert: Dell Foundation invests in SME lender Kinara Capital

Bangalore-based financier for the micro, small, and medium enterprises Kinara Capital has received an equity investment from the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation. The Dell family foundation will hold a minority equity stake in the company, and Satyam Darmora, Portfolio Lead, Family Economic Stability will join the Board of Directors.

From the Venture Intelligence Social VC Investments Database: Kinara Capital had earlier raised funding from Unitus and Sorenson Impact Foundation. 

 
Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

October 27, 2014

Deal Alert: Online test prep startup TestBook raises Rs.1.5 Cr from ah! Ventures, Carlyle MD

PE firm Carlyle's India MD Shankar Narayanan and angel group ah! Ventures have invested INR 1.5 crore in Mumbai-based Testbook which provides free mock tests for entrance exams such as GATE and CAT. The start-up was founded by six IIT-ians in 2012.

Source: Times of India

Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

Deal Alert: IAN Invests in UK-based meetings management app firm Lowdown

Indian Angel Network’s UK operation has announced an investment in Lowdownapp Ltd, a London based meeting management app maker that offers users a snapshot and in-depth view of attendee information, company details, etc. It fuses together a slice of the calendar in-built in the mobile device with a custom-built narrow artificial intelligence engine, presenting information instantly for the benefit of professionals.

Source: Nextbigwhat.com

Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

Deal Alert: Target announces second batch

US retailer Target Corporation has roped in a second set of start-ups for its accelerator programme based in Bangalore. While the first batch focused on themes like personalisation search, content and mobile, the second batch focuses on core retail solutions. The new batch includes Torch Technologies, which has developed a hardware plug-in device for brick and mortar stores to make data-driven decisions. Other solutions include tools to sell ads on a smartphone's lock screen (Twiddly), platforms to help companies create 3D ads and apps (Visarity), a visual search engine for e-commerce (Wazzat Fashion) and tools for augmented reality (Whodat Spaces). 

 
Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

The Dangerous Shotgun Wedding of Financial Technologies with NSEL

In a "shotgun wedding", the long term ramifications of which were somewhat drowned amidst the Diwali break last week, the Union Government has ordered the forced merger of two private sector companies in "public interest": National Spot Exchange Ltd (NSEL) with its publicly traded parent company - Financial Technologies (FTIL).

Creditably, Mint had front paged a well argued opinion piece (by Mobis Philipose) titled "Order violates fundamental principles of rule of law". Extracts (emphasis mine):
Here’s the main problem: the government is forcing a parent company to take on the liability of a subsidiary company, ignoring the fact the subsidiary was formed as a separate entity precisely so that the parent company’s liability is limited to the extent of its investment in the firm.

... who’s to say that the dues of investors in NSEL’s products serve a greater public interest than the interests of FTIL’s minority shareholders? An argument is being made by NSEL investors that about 85% of FTIL’s shares are held by a few large shareholders and the over 55,000 other shareholders hold less than 15% in the company. But can it be concluded that the interests of these small shareholders don’t matter?

...Of course, all this is not to say that NSEL’s investors shouldn’t be paid back their dues. But two wrongs don’t make a right. If the government is keen on the recovery of the dues of NSEL investors, it must act tough against NSEL’s management, the FTIL directors who were involved in the running of the spot exchange, including Shah, as well as the defaulting companies who owe the exchange large sums of money.

...In both the FTIL and DLF cases, fundamental principles about corporate limited liability, the rights of minority shareholders and property rights appear to have been violated. Unless corrected, they may well deal a blow to investor sentiment. It will very probably now be up to the courts to uphold these basic rules.
Update: Venkat Chary, chairman and independent non-executive director, FTIL, and former chairman, Forward Markets Commission (FMC), makes some additional points in interview to the Business Standard..

Will this case become another Vodafone? Hopefully, better sense will prevail.

Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

October 23, 2014

Deal Alert: Ideaworks Partners invests Rs.10-Cr in outsource product development firm People10

Bangalore-based outsourced software product development firm ‘People 10’ has raised about INR 10 crore from US-based fund Ideaworks Partners in a Series A round of fundraising. Founded in 2011, the firm has presence in the US, Germany and Canada, besides India. RSVP Capital Advisors was the investment advisor for the transaction.

People10 plans to use the funds to build a stronger local presence in the US and expand its client base. It plans to expand the size of its workforce from the current 60 to 100 in the next quarter. The company expects to earn revenue of INR 10 crore by March 2015. 

 
Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

Deal Alert: VentureNursery Angels invest in HotelsAroundYou

Last-minute hotel booking start-up HotelsAroundYou has raised seed funding from more than 10 angel investors associated with early-stage accelerator VentureNursery. The investors include Patni scions Amit and Arihant, Aditya Birla Capital Advisors chief executive Bharat Banka and Fame Cinemas Founder Shravan Shroff. 

Started in 2013 by college friends Harsha Nallur, Mohsin Dingankar and Animesh Chaudhary, HotelsAroundYou was chosen for VentureNursery's bootcamp in May 2014. The company, which has launched operations in Mumbai, connects last-minute travellers with hotels looking to sell off unsold hotel rooms for that day. The company aims to solve a problem for frequent business travellers. It will use the funding to expand operations to Pune next month and to six more cities by mid next year. 

 
Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

Deal Alert: Secondhand books marketplace Notemybook incubated at Vesit

Notemybook, a start-up based in Mumbai that aims to make books available to students at 40% less cost, has been incubated at Vivekanand Education Society's Institute of Technology (VESIT) located in Chembur, Mumbai. Notemybook enables students to register as a buyer or seller or both. The start-up is run by two students of VESIT

Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

October 19, 2014

Doug Leone of Sequoia on Indian VC

Economic Times has an interesting interview with Sequoia Capital's Silicon Valley-based partner Douglas (Doug) Leone on the firm's investments in India and elsewhere. Extracts (emphasis mine):

On why Sequoia is sitting out the Indian e-commerce gold rush (for the most part):
It is clear that online retail is a large topline market; it is yet to be proven if it is going to be a profitable bottom-line market. We have chosen not to participate because we understood that it is going to play out this way. I heard Bezos was here writing a $2 billion cheque. We like companies that can get big and powerful on $50 million or less and not two, three, four or five billion. Times may change, we may like to participate. We are investors in Alibaba, but we don't want to go at a time when we know that after us billions of dollars (more) have to be raised.
On being a VC:
We like founders that are very determined, people whom conventional wisdom will (term) as: "They're tough to work with, they're difficult." Those are terrific traits. (Apple founder) Steve Jobs was not an easy guy to get along with. We like people with a desire to win, to change the world. These are very clear thinkers, because if you do not articulate things clearly, you probably are not a clear thinker. So we listen very carefully. Investment is a listening business. It's not about making money, it's about changing the world.
The latest bubble in Silicon Valley:
Nervously exuberant. I think Silicon Valley is little bit confused now. Three months ago, it was "go" at all costs, now a few people have come up and are saying why are these companies spending this much? These are unstable times. Should a company grow if they are losing money? Even public market analysts are confused about that. I think the 2015 version of 1999 is not going to be companies without a business model, it is going to be companies where investors valued it worth X and they are going to be worth a subset of that X. And the burn rates have to drastically come down if they have to survive.

Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

October 16, 2014

Deal Alert: Lingerie e-tailer Cloe attracts German investors

Noida-based lingerie e-tailer Cloe has raised an investment from a group of investors in Germany "with deep roots in consumer retail and Internet". 

From the Venture Intelligence PE Deal database: In May 2013, Cloe had attracted INR 4.72 cr from Mountain Apollo. (Subscribers to the database can login to view the deal structuring and other transaction details.)

Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

Deal Alert: Biba acquires 26% stake in fellow apparels firm Anju Modi

Retail brand Biba Apparels has acquired 26.66% stake in Anjuman Brand Designs which is engaged in the business of designing, manufacture and sale of garments under the brand name "ANJU MODI" and has 10 exclusive stores in India and is also engaged in e-commerce. Biba also acquired certain convertible debentures in Anjuman Brand Designs Pvt Ltd. Khaitan & Co advised Anju Modi.

From the Venture Intelligence PE Deal database: In September 2013, Warburg Pincus and Faering Capital had invested $54 million in Biba Apparels.

Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

Deal Alert: Fmr Infy CFO V. Balakrishnan invests in IT Services firm Avekshaa

Former Infosys board member V Balakrishnan has invested Rs 25 lakh in Bangalore-based IT solutions provider Avekshaa Technologies. Balakrishnan has joined Avekshaa's board as an independent director and is mentoring the three-year-old company. Avekshaa's proprietary platform Performance, Availability, Security and Scalability (PASS) helps enterprises mitigate IT related business risks and make their IT systems faster and efficient. 

Last month, Balakrishnan and his predecessor at Infy, TV Mohandas Pai together invested Rs 50 lakh in Bangalore-based compliance ERP provider Clonect Solutions that offers enterprise governance, risk management and compliance management solutions. 

 
Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

October 14, 2014

Deal Alert: Seedfund invests $2-M in resort room aggregator V Resorts

V Resorts, a Noida-based company aggregating boutique hotel chains, has raised close to $2 million (about Rs. 12 crore) in pre-series A funding from Seedfund. V Resorts, founded by Aditi Balbir in 2012, aggregates existing properties and takes over the management and operations of those properties on a revenue share basis on a 10-15 year lease. The company will use the new capital to expand its capacity of rooms to 300 from the current 80 over the next 5-6 months. V Resorts currently operates six properties located in Uttarakhand (Sattal, Ramgarh, Corbett, Pauri and Rajaji National Park), Himachal Pradesh and Rajasthan. By March 2015, it hopes to hit at least 10 properties. 

The company had earlier raised a seed round from Bedrock Ventures, which had also incubated the venture. Bedrock has not participated in the current round but remains invested in the company. 

 
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Deal Alert: SRK in a structured deal with fashion e-tailer Yepme

Bollywood actor Shah Rukh Khan (SRK) has signed on as the brand ambassador for fashion e-tailer Yepme in a deal that is structured in a such a way that lets the actor pick up a stake in Yepme going forward. Yepme is in the midst of closing a $30-million financing round with a consortium of four investors, including its two existing investors Helion Venture Partners and Capricorn Venture Partners. 

The e-tailer, which only sells private brands, plans to spend Rs 15-20 crore over the next three months on its multi-media advertising campaign featuring SRK. The company has in all raised $21 million across three previous rounds, the last one being in December 2013. Yepme is expected to end the year with Rs 200-crore sales.


Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

October 13, 2014

Deal Alert: Online handyman service Timesaverz attracts angel funding

Mumbai-based Timesaverz, a platform to obtain people for home services, has raised seed funding from a clutch of angel investors led by former Yahoo executive Neville Taraporewalla and GSF Accelerator founder Rajesh Sawhney. The other investors include Ashish Jalani, founder at eTailing India, Dinesh Agarwal, founder of Indiamart, and Nish Bhutani, COO of Saffronart. Timesaverz offers handyman and cleaning services and appliances repair. Each service agent is background checked, skill-set verified and soft-skills trained. 

 
Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

Deal Alert: OnlinePrasad taps Hyd, Chennai Angels

Hyderabad Angels and Chennai Angels - via 20 of their members including former Microsoft India Development Center MD Srini Koppulu, ex-CEO and cofounder of Sify.com R Ramaraj, Suresh Productions CEO Suresh Babu and founder of Computer Age Management Services V Shankar - have invested in Bangalore-based Onlineprasad.com. Niraj Mital from Hyderabad Angels would be joining OnlinePrasad's board representing the larger investor group.

OnlinePrasad started by 26-year old Goonjan Mall has been seed funded by the storied entrepreneur duo K Ganesh and Meena Ganesh and The Morpheus. The company is a niche e-tailer that is networked to 50 temples in India, and uses the mobile and web platforms to deliver religious offerings such as prasad and other products to users’ doorstep. 

Source: Times of India

Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India. Click Here to view our products list including the Free Deal Digest Weekly: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.