Top Startup Investors in India

For a start-up in its growth stage, the next most important requirement is undoubtedly a backing by reliable Startup investors and an ample amount of funding to scale up. This investment can be provided by individuals, entrepreneurs or organizations with the motive of profits.

Startup Investors provide funds to those start-ups which are socially and economically viable, have the capacity to scale up and are backed by a good team. These perspectives may vary from investor to investor.

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Top Startup Investors in India

Here is a lowdown on some such Startup investors and capital funds in India along with their investment capacity, investment structure, investment industries and some of their most notable portfolio startups.

Venture Capitalists

A venture capitalist is an investor who provides capital to startup ventures or small companies with a distinct and innovative idea, that wish to expand but do not have access to funds.

Some well-known Venture Capitalist firms in the Indian startup scene are:

1) Helion Venture Partners A $605-million Indian-focused company investing in technology-powered and consumer service businesses. They are an early to mid-stage venture fund participating in future rounds of financing in syndication with other venture partners.

Investment Structure: Between $2 million and $10 million in each company with less than $10 million in revenues.

Industries: Outsourcing, Mobile, Internet, Retail Services, Healthcare, Education, and Financial Services.

Funded startups: Yepme, MakemyTrip, NetAmbit, Komli, TAXI For Sure, PubMatic.

2) Accel Partners They have a presence in Palo Alto, London, New York, China, and India. They make multi-stage investments in internet technology companies.

Investment Structure: Between $0.5 million and $50 million

Industries: Internet and Consumer Services, Infrastructure, Cloud -Enabled Services, Mobile and Software.

Funded Startups: Flipkart, BabyOye, Freshdesk, Book My Show, Zansaar, Probe, Myntra, CommonFloor.

3) Sequoia Capital India Sequoia specializes in investments in startup seed, early, mid, late, expansion, public, and growth-stage companies.

Investment Structure: Between $100,000 and $1 million in seed stage, between $1 million and $10 million in early stage and between $10 million and $100 million in growth stage companies.

Industries: Consumer, Energy, Financial, Healthcare, Outsourcing, Technology.

Funded Startups: JustDial, Knowlarity, Practo, iYogi,

4) Nexus Venture Partners They invest in early stage and growth stage startups across India and US.

Investment Structure: Between $0.5 million and $10 million in early growth stage companies. They also make investments worth $0.5 million in their seed program.

Industries: Mobile, Data Security, Big Data analytics, Infrastructure, Cloud, Storage, Internet, Rural Sector, Outsourced Services, Agribusiness, Energy, Media, Consumer and Business services, Technology.

Funded Startups: Snapdeal, Housing, Komli, ScaleArc, PubMatic, Delhivery.

5) Global venture capital They invest in people with visionary ideas and specialize in all stages of development, seed financings, start-ups, growth and early stage investments, typically Series A and B financings.

Investment Structure: The firm typically invests between $0.05 million and $80 million in its portfolio company. It prefers to exit its investments within 7 to 10 years.

Industries: Technology- Advertising & Marketing, Big Data/Cloud, Consumer, Enterprise/SaaS, FinTech, Hardware, Healthcare – Biopharma, digital Health & MedTech.

Funded Startups: Naaptol, Bharat Matrimony, iYogi, Happiest minds, mCARBON, CarTrade, Surewaves.

6) SAIF Partners They have been investing in India since 2001 and specialize in private equity and venture capital across Asia.

Investment Structure: Between $10 million and $100 million in one or more rounds of financing with investments between $200,000 to $500,000 in early stage companies and between $30 million and $35 million in more mature unlisted ventures.

Industries: IT, ITes, Industrials, Financial Services, Internet, Consumer Product, Mobile

Funded Startups:, Paytm, Network18, HomeShop18, Book My Show.

7) Inventus Capital Partners This is a venture capital fund managed by entrepreneurs and industry-operating veterans.

Investment Structure: They do not invest in capital-intensive companies and typically lead the first venture round with $1 million to $2 million. As the businesses grow, they invest between $0.25 million and $10 million.

Industries: Consumer, Hotels, Restaurants and Leisure, Media, Internet and Catalog Retail, Healthcare, Information Technology, Hardware and Equipment, Telecommunications etc.

Funded Startups: Poshmark, Savaari, Farfaria, Policy, Insta Health Solutions, CBazaar.

Seed Funds

Let us understand it this way: as we need seeds to plant a tree, we need money to plant (start) a business. So the very initial amount of capital needed for a startup is called the seed money or seed fund.

They help founders quit their day jobs, build a team and get to their first revenue as also help lay the foundation for many more future investments to come.

Top seed funders of India are given below.

1) Blume Ventures (founded in 2011) . Fresh from their Zipdial exit, they are quite easy to reach at @arpiit.

2) Unitus Seed Fund (founded in 2012) . With an impact agenda in place, they are great to approach for startups in education, health, payments, and “inclusive” business ideas, in general. They have also launched an accelerator program called Speed2Seed.

3) India Quotient (founded in 2013) . These people are also entrepreneurs in their own right and very accessible.

4) Orios Venture Partners (founded in 2014) This was started by successful angel investor Rehanyar Khan. The website features many of his past angel investments like Olacabs. They have already made 12 investments but only announced Yumist amongst their seed bets.

5) Kae Capital (founded in 2011)  The founder of Kae started Mumbai Angels in 2006. They are also super accessible.

6) Seedfund (founded in 2006)  They were India’s first in this sector and led some very successful investments with redBus and Carwale.

7) Jungle Ventures (founded in 2012)  Run by a person who was an active angel investor way before he started running Jungle. The team makes investments across Asia and has great operating experience. They are series A seed funders though.

Nikita Bhatia
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