US-based Bessemer Venture Partners has closed an India-dedicated early-stage focussed fund with a $220 Mn corpus. Along with the raised fund, the venture capital firm (VC) has also appointed ex-India Resurgence Fund executive and VixCap founder Nithin Kaimal. Kaimal joins Bessemer as the COO for the VC’s Bengaluru office to oversee operations, portfolio services, and fund governance.
Bessemer Venture Partners, founded in 1911, is a global VC that currently manages more than $9 Bn of venture capital. It has invested in around 200 companies globally, with more than 135 IPOs in areas like enterprise, consumer and healthcare spaces. Bessemer’s global portfolio includes Pinterest, Shopify, Twilio, Yelp, LinkedIn, PagerDuty, DocuSign, Wix, Fiverr and Toast, while its Indian portfolio includes seven IPOs and five unicorns including LivSpace, Home First Finance, PharmEasy, BigBasket, Swiggy, Urban Company and Perfios.
With a ticket size of $1 Mn to $50 Mn, Bessemer plans to use the new capital in early-stage startups focussed on consumer internet and cloud software, including marketplaces, digital health, social commerce, vertical and global SaaS (software-as-a-service). It will participate in seed to Series A round of 12-15 startups, with a commitment to move along the growth cycle of the startups.
“India represents a trillion-dollar digital opportunity across consumer internet and SaaS as we predict $500 Mn more people will engage and transact online in the next ten years. Through this new fund, we will continue to partner with the best entrepreneurs who are looking to build for this opportunity within India and beyond,” Bessemer Partner Anant Vidur Puri said.
The Indian start-up ecosystem presents a blossoming opportunity for global investors. India is set to surpass the record level of total investment it saw last year when venture funding totalled $33.8 Bn, where $37 Bn was raised by November 3rd week alone. Only last week (November 21-27), Indian startups raised a whopping $1.8 Bn, led by Dream11’s massive $840 Mn round.
While the funding stats are dominated by late-stage startups, the venture capitalists that are backing early-stage startups include:
- Some prominent yearly accelerator programmes like Y Combinator, Airtel Startup Accelerator Program, Reliance’s GenNext, Google For Startups, Microsoft Accelerator, The Facebook Accelerator Program, Angel Pad, Huddle among others and
- Micro VC firms with fund size at sub-$30 Mn, such as Artha Venture, Atrium Angels, Gemba Capital, Capital A, Sequoia India’s Surge, Investment Syndicate Seeders, Better Capital among others.
- Early-stage VC firms with fund size over $100 Mn such as Leo Capital, Stride Ventures, Prime Ventures, Kalaari Capital, Blume Ventures, Matric Partners, 3One4 Capital, agritech-focussed Omnivore, Chiratae Ventures, among others.