Tech veterans Nilekani and Aggarwal’s India enterprise raises $227 million second fund – TechCrunch


Fundamentum Partnership, a enterprise agency co-founded by Nandan Nilekani and Sanjeev Aggarwal, has raised $227 million for its second fund because the high-profile trade veterans double down on backing startups within the South Asian nation.

The fund plans to deploy the capital by investing in 4 to 5 startups every year. Fundamentum, which generally backs startups in Collection B stage and past, will look to steer or co-lead $25 million to $40 million rounds, Aggarwal instructed TechCrunch in an interview.

Nilekani, co-founder of IT providers big Infosys and who has been instrumental in a number of of India’s digital initiatives together with biometric IDs Aadhaar, and Aggarwal, who based now IBM-owned BPO agency Daksh, launched Fundamentum in 2019 to again consumer-focused and software-focused startups.

“Digital acceleration, introduced on by the pandemic, has dramatically elevated expertise spending the world over. India has all of the components in place—capital, entrepreneurs, tales of success, and liquidity. On this decade, we are going to see entrepreneurs making a fabric impression on the nation at scale because the digital depth of society will increase,” stated Nilekani in a press release.

“We’re within the early levels of that journey. At Fundamentum, we examined the waters with the primary fund. We now intend to go deeper into our funding program, give attention to entrepreneurs creating built-to-last corporations out of India, and steadfastly help them of their thrilling journey.”

The agency, which has evaluated over 500 startups, has made half a dozen investments thus far that its portfolio startups have collectively raised over $1 billion in comply with on rounds. Fundamentum’s portfolio consists of unicorns on-line pharmacy Pharmeasy and automotive market Spinny.

Fundamentum’s new fund is backed practically fully by Indian entrepreneurs, it stated. “We really feel the entrepreneurs’ capital is superior capital. It delivers cash++,” Aggarwal stated.

“On condition that all of us entrepreneurs, we do have that bias,” he added, with out ruling out the likelihood that Fundamentum could open up the fund to institutional traders sooner or later.

The brand new fund comes at a time when startups in India — and past — are discovering it more and more tough to lift capital at phrases thought of favorable from final 12 months’s bull cycle norm. Aggarwal stated many reputed early-stage enterprise corporations have closed new rounds in India in current quarters, so there’s sufficient dry powder to proceed to again younger startups.

For progress stage startups, it’s a barely completely different story. “The expansion capital that used to come back to India, that has kind of dried up,” he stated. Aggarwal acknowledged the shift within the dynamics within the trade, saying valuation asks have corrected and dealflow has remained sturdy. “So that you now have time to do extra due diligence and make investments at proper costs,” he stated.

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