Avnish Bajaj, Binny Bansal back AngelList's India fund

Avnish Bajaj, Binny Bansal back AngelList's India fund
Photo Credit: Photo Credit: 123RF.com
2 Apr, 2019

US-based investment crowdfunding platform AngelList has raised an India-dedicated fund called The Collective that will invest in tech startups, a senior executive told TechCircle.

The fund has a list of sponsors that include Flipkart’s cofounder Binny Bansal; Salil Deshpande of Bain Capital Ventures; Matrix Partners’ Avnish Bajaj, Tarun Davda and Vikram Vaidyanathan. Also sponsoring the fund are Navroz Udwadia of Falcon Edge Capital; DST Global’s Rahul Mehta; as well as venture funds like Kalaari Capital, FJ Labs, and Beenext.

“The idea is to power the best tech-enabled scout network in this country — our syndicate leads — who do the hard-work of sourcing allocation in hot investment rounds,” said Utsav Somani, partner, AngelList India.

AngelList launched its syndicate programme in India a year ago that allows experienced technology investors to create a single venture capital fund which raises money from institutions and angel investors. Some of its investments include BharatPe, Yulu, Open, Nymble, HalaPlay, Jai Kisan, and Lean Agri.

Syndicate leads can access up to $150,000 in additional capital per deal from The Collective. The Collective will invest in more than 60 startups with an average ticket size of $100,000 (Rs 69 lakh at current exchange rate) over the next 12 months.

“We provided syndicate leads with our infrastructure in 2018. In 2019, we will give them institutional capital,” said Somani.

The investment committee would comprise Somani; Pankaj Jain, ex-partner, 500 Startups India; and Nipun Mehra, who has worked at Sequoia, Flipkart and Pine Labs.

“The funds have been already raised. We have registered with the market regulator and will start investing shortly. The fund corpus is undisclosed and we will be targeting 60-plus investments over the next 12 months,” said Somani.

The fund aims to invest across sectors.

“We’ve invested in a racing-car league, in a craft-gin manufacturing company and a space-satellite manufacturing private player,” Somani said.

San Francisco-based AngelList was founded in 2010 by India-origin serial entrepreneur Naval Ravikant along with Babak Nivi.