The Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) has formed a Venture Capital (VC) Committee. The committee will work in the areas of public policy consultations, stakeholder engagement, ecosystem enhancement and building a strong industry network for venture capital firms. It will also play a role in highlighting sector-specific challenges faced by portfolio companies of the member VC firms.
Vikas Agnihotri, Operating Partner, SoftBank Investment Advisers, will chair the VC Committee and Shweta Rajpal Kohli, Chief Public Policy Officer, Sequoia India & Southeast Asia, will co-chair the panel.
Over the past one decade, India's start-up ecosystem has undergone a significant transformation. According to the National Investment Promotion and Facilitation Agency (Invest India), the country has the third-largest start-up ecosystem in the world, with 69,000 start-ups, out of which 100 are unicorns. The increasing support of venture capital firms to Indian start-ups makes it imperative to highlight the collective issues faced by these firms at appropriate forums. Therefore, the committee provides an appropriate platform for the VC community.
Agnihotri said that the committee “will work with all the stakeholders in building a robust and transparent framework for investors who are betting on India’s accelerating digital GDP”. He added that VC/PE firms are backing the high-velocity companies in job creation and capex spending, revving up the overall market buoyancy.”
The committee will be a bi-partisan group having nearly half its members from the Indian VC community. Seqouia India, SoftBank, Multiples Alternate Asset Management, Indian Angel Network, 3one4 Capital, Eximius and other domestic and international venture funds have joined this committee as members, according to an official statement.
It further added that "some of the issues being taken up by the committee are direct foreign listing of Indian start-ups, clarification on Gift tax, taxation on ESOPs, angel fund structure, GIFT City regulations etc."
“The formation of this committee is a crucial step towards furthering the government's vision of turning India into an attractive investment destination for VC and PE firms and building a world-class start-up ecosystem,” said Kohli.
Earlier this year, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, during her Union Budget 2022 speech, announced setting up an expert committee regarding the regulatory framework for the venture capital and private equity industry, while acknowledging the role of VC/PE firms towards supporting India's start-up ecosystem and making India a $5 trillion economy.