Last week we discussed about some of the amazing startups from the city of Hyderabad. As a part of our Series Indian Startup Hubs, we bring to you the list of people and organisations that are boosting the startup ecosystem in Hyderabad.
Sashi Reddi is a technology entrepreneur and an active angel investor. He runs a seed stage venture fund, SRI Capital. Few of its portfolio companies include Glassbeam, ThinCI, Identropy , Edutor, and iMomentous. He is also a member of the investment team at Gabriel Investments. Sashi had also founded AppLabs, an independent software testing company which was funded by Sequoia Capital India and was acquired by Computer Sciences Corporation (CSC). Post its acquisition, Sashi served as the VP & GM, Big Data and Analytics at CSC. He also founded EZPower Systems, iCoop, and FXLabs. He received his BTech in Computer Science from the IIT Delhi, an MS in Computer Science from New York University, and a PhD from The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania. Sashi serves on the advisory board of Wharton Entrepreneurship, board of Ben Franklin Technology Partners, as well as on the board of the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts.
He co-founded Yesgnome which builds social mobile games. He also co-founded PurpleTalk, which specialized in anticipating how technology and its uses will evolve and also Panterra Networks. At present he is the chairman of Education for Free Research Center which provides a platform for collaboration among teachers.
Ravi Trivedi is the founder of Srijan Capital, which is focused on angel investments and hands-on incubation. He has been a board observer and board member for several startups in his portfolio. He is a Mentor for IIM-A’s iAccelerator, and Microsoft Accelerator. His investments include – Explara, Tookitaki, Mechmocha, Collatebox, Venturesity, and CouponRani. He is based out in Bangalore but is seen active with a startups in Hyderabad.
A committed entrepreneur, mentor, orator, angel investor and start-up evangelist. He is theManaging Director and CEO of Domestic Workforce Pvt Ltd, a private sector enterprise specialising in livelihood skills development to empower underprivileged women and youth. Murali is also the President of TiE Hyderabad, and is a Member on the board of Hyderabad Angels, Identis Solutions, Rockwell International School and MyLabYogi.
Murali is passionate about mentoring entrepreneurs and ensuring their success. He takes keen interest in facilitating knowledge transfer in the areas of education, technology and social enterprises. Ever since Murali ventured into entrepreneurship in 2002, he has forayed into multiple sectors providing employment to a sizeable number of people, guiding several people into entrepreneurship and generating more than US 8 million in the process.
Lax is a senior business leader and a serial entrepreneur with a blend of strategy, sales management, business operations and people leadership. He has invested in Hyderabad-based photography startup Flattpebble and is an active member of Hyderabad Angels.
Pradeep Mittal had worked for nearly a decade in IBM and the urge to start his own business led to the establishment of Magna Infotech initially in USA in 1995 and later on he moved to India to start India operations at Hyderabad in 1997. Magna has offices in 7 cities across India; 200+ blue chip companies as its clients and an employee spread in 32 cities across India. Early in 2014, he acquired controlling stake in Goose Technologies Pvt Ltd, a software product company and currently serves as Executive Chairman at Hyderabad Angels.
He served as Corporate Vice President of Microsoft Corporation. He established Microsoft India Development Center in 1998 and turned it into a technology leader where core MS technologies are incubated and developed from conception to completion. He holds Master’s degree in Computer Science from the University of Louisiana, Lafayette and a Bachelor of Engineering (Mechanical) from Andhra University. He has invested in OnlinePrasad, Zify and CustomFurnish.
Prasad Vanga is an entrepreneur, angel investor who has over 17 years of extensive experience in consulting services, building new product offerings and scaling startup companies. He has been involved with several Startups that have become great companies like Tynker, Medplus and Manage my Spa. His expertise is in helping startups accelerate with creative marketing / sales strategies and partnerships. He is currently the Founder & Chief Accelerator for Anthill Ventures which makes him responsible for providing the strategic vision and hands on mentoring for Anthill’s Startup portfolio.
Suresh Babu, Managing Director of Suresh Productions and a Mechanical Engineer from the University of Michigan, began his film career in the early 80’s. He established Suresh Productions, one of India’s largest integrated production powerhouses as producers, distributors, exhibitors, digital post facilities, animation and gaming studios. The digital studio provides a complete chain of postproduction facilities like 3D animation, visual effects, digital intermediate and video gaming in collaboration with major post houses like Prime Focus, Fxlabs and others. He has the ability to evolve with rapidly growing technology. He also has a keen interest in other industries and has expanded into ventures such as infrastructure & real estate development, materials and food processing and now currently serves as Vice Chairman at Hyderabad Angels.
He is an entrepreneur and technology evangelist with 24 years of experience in Technology and Management verticals. He has built and led teams for some of the Top Fortune 500 companies in USA and India. He founded AccurumInc, which was acquired by Kanbay in 2005 in a multi-million dollar deal. He completed his BE, Mechanical Engineering, from Manipal Institute of Technology and MS, Computer Science, from NJIT. He continues to be part of entrepreneurial ecosystem by investing in early stage startup such as Energy Leader, Zify, eVaidya, VioletStreet to name a few.
Salman Babukhan, of the renowned Babukhan family of Hyderabad, completed his schooling and graduation from Hyderabad and then went on to acquire a Management degree from the Loyola University of Chicago, Illinois, USA. He is the custodian of the Babukhan Legacy that straddles across diverse fields such as education, adventure sports and construction, to name but a few, and simultaneously espouses several philanthropic causes. His core competencies are Human Resources, Finance and Marketing. Currently, he is on Board of Directors of Hyderabad Angels.
Ramesh Loganathan leads Progress Software’s product development laboratory, at Hyderabad. He has over 23 years of experience in distributed systems engineering and R&D leadership. Prior to joining Progress, he was Vice President of product engineering and middleware technologies at Pramati. He holds a Masters degree in Electrical Engineering – Control Systems from Anna University. He is an active member of the IT industry organizations NASSCOM and ITsAP, where he helps with product and technology initiatives. He is also active in the Hyderabad startup ecosystem – driving early stage startup events for TiE-Hyderabad. He also helps organise monthly Startup Saturdays – a networking platform for budding technology entrepreneurs.
Ravi knows startups, he expertises in Mobile Development and digital platforms, integrated social media and social gaming. He started off his entrepreneurial journey when he co-founded the first iOS development company, xcubelabs in March 2008. With a hunger for innovation, the love he developed for startups and the expertise that he possessed, he decided to take his learning and experiences from his success to develop the concept of Startup Hyderabad. Startup Hyderabad is a story of how hobby turned into profession. He works for enriching the Hyderabad’s ecosystem by organising meetup groups globally, working with the government, becoming a part of developer platforms and mentoring.
He is Managing Director for Flexeye IT Services, Angel Investor and TiE Charter Member. Prior to Flexeye, he was part of senior management team at Catalytic, Founder and CEO for Blually Software. He is a seasoned innovative guru in Media/Entertainment and IoT (Internet of Things) verticals, delivering High Quality applications and products across many channels including Web, RIA, Mobile and Wireless, Games for Mobile/Console, Digital Content Creation for TV and Motion Picture for corporate giants and technical leaders like Viacom group of companies, France Telecom, Microsoft, Verizon Wireless, AOL, NASA, Cisco, Autodesk etc.
He is being an Entrepreneur and one of the faces of the Hyderabad startup scene. Sanjay is currently founding partner at 50k Ventures, a platform for startups at the earliest stage of their life-cycles, providing access to seed funds, and connect with dedicated mentors. Sanjay has been associated with various startups forums and also Director at Founders Institute Hyderabad chapter. He is also the founder at imgeek, a startup focus in the area of Career, Technology and Startups for students and working professionals connecting with industry. He had so far reviewed hundreds of Business plans, consulted and mentored many startups from different verticals in India and Africa.
Srinivas is a startup lover and acts as an advisor to companies in his individual capacity. He has over 20 years of management experience working with teams from various parts of the world and has a vast network. He founded Omega Immunotech Pvt. Ltd in 1991 with an objective of importing and selling diagnostic enzymes. He is current CEO of IIIT-H foundation where he aims to encourage entrepreneurship. IIIT-H has a co-working space and incubator known as the Centre of Innovation and Entrepreneurship(CIE) which has 60 startup under its roof. He graduated from Nagarjuna University in Economics and earned his MBA in Marketing from Institute of Management Education.
Prabhu Ram completed his schooling from DBTR National Secondary School and graduated from Bharathidasan University. He started EBS January 2004 which was acquired by Ogone Payment Services in 2005 and at that time it claimed to hold 20% of the market share in terms of merchant base in the Indian payment gateway industry. Though the company continued its operations under its new management structure. He launched his new venture Paynear in April this year. The company aims at providing simplified payment solutions to cater to all categories of businesses. Its package consists of mPOS solution, CRM and payment gateway; designed to simplify payment processing and complement the mPOS eco-system.
Vineel had started 50K Ventures along with Sanjay which is going to be an enabler in the startup eco-system by providing the needed funding & bringing together industry experts to mentor & guide the startups. Currently, he is the CEO of NBOS technologies (Nothing But Open Source) which provides technology services to various startups in open source technologies. He has over 20 years of experience in IT industry with varied experience in working with Fortune 100 companies and especially startups. In addition, he also started the WaveLabs innovation centre to assist teams to come together, innovate, ideate & build an MVP at a record pace.
Several start-ups and start-up organisations and also event industry look up to Chennapa Naidu Darapaneni, founder & CEO of MeraEvents, for knowledge sharing and grooming of budding entrepreneurs.
Considering his 18 years of experience and success as an entrepreneur, Naidu is the “how- to-do-it” guide for the enthusiastic entrepreneurs for understanding the nuances of the industry.
He founded MeraEvents as a start-up in Hyderabad five years ago to fill the gap in the event ticketing space, leveraging technology for an electronic music event or a corporate seminar or an entertainment program or a spiritual conference or a sporting event.
Versant Online Solutions, the parent company of MeraEvents, is posting a growth of 300 per cent YoY. Naidu, a B Tech from JNTU-Anantapur, began his career as a software engineer, promoted and incubated a software company, Versant Technologies, in the USA and sold it off after a decade.
Accelerators and Incubators
Progress Software has recently got into a new role of external incubator with the opening of a 23-seater, 1,600 sq ft facility. The programme aims to help early-stage startups that are building business applications. Startups that are at the prototype stage of an idea can leverage the Progress Pacific and Progress Rollbase solutions to gain productivity benefits and faster time-to-market for their business applications. The Pacific Incubator programme provides work space for each startup and access to the Pacific platform to build their solutions. Progress engineers will be available to help the startups by lending their expertise among others. Mentoring and providing access to markets, depending on the merit of the startup’s idea. The company has no plans to take any equity in the startups in lieu of giving them space that is worth (notional) INR 10,000 a seat per month.
The college has a vision to bring in innovation through its various initiatives and has established a technology business incubator in the campus.
The TBI was set up in 2013 and has incubated over 12 startups, maximum startups incubated by TBI are founded by its faculty members or students. It also offers virtual incubator program for those who are based outside this particular campus.
IIITH – Foundation
The IIIT-H Foundation manages over 30,000 sft of space that consists of a coworking space and Incubator known as the Centre for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (CIE) on the IIIT-H campus. CIE is one of the largest Incubators in India, with over 50 startups under its roof.
DLabs incubator has been set up by Indian School of Business (ISB) with the objective of strengthening entrepreneurship and fostering innovation. ISB will support the activities of DLabs through its faculty and research expertise by providing guidance, knowledge and mentorship to the entrepreneurs whose ventures are selected for incubation.
UnLtd Hyderabad is an incubator for Social Entrepreneurs and largest network of social change makers in AP and Telangana. It funds and support individuals whose ideas, passion, and entrepreneurial skills can bring long-term solutions to social problems.
Catalyzer is an early stage startup entrepreneurial commune. They work with prospective founders through an entrepreneurship program. Catalyzer Startup 101 Accelerator Program is a 101 days mentorship driven entrepreneurship cohort accelerator program for startups. It selects 12 startup teams (or individuals) and helps them navigate the crucial first stage. Catalyzer Startup Accelerator focuses on startups in Technology – mobile, internet, telecom, etc., Non-Technology – education, environment, healthcare, nutrition, hospitality & design and enterprises creating Social Capital – for profit and non profit. In simple words, Catalyzer is a Mentor, Accelerator, Investor & Kick Starter for Startup Entrepreneurs. Few startups accelerated by Catalyzer include PaneerWala, EDGE Modulator, Activ.co, Walden’s Path, FictionTree, Angular Technologies and NewsDeck120.
The Wadhwani Foundation is a philanthropic organisation founded by Romesh Wadhwani, a Silicon Valley-based entrepreneur, with a strong belief that improved standard of living of a nation’s populace is directly tied to accelerating economic development. At WCED, they are committed to entrepreneurship as a transformational vehicle for the broad-based growth of India and other developing economies. The centre aims to enable creation and growth of sustainable and competitive enterprises through innovative research, outreach and pilot initiatives. Their focus area includes finance, innovation and knowledge networks.
Utthishta helps in raising seed fund for startups in software, web, mobile and the cloud computing space. They provide a combination of seed funding along with focused mentoring to early stage startups for a small piece of equity. The main areas that the company focus on includes creating a predictable sales machine, creating a product people love and pay for and raising the next round of funding.
50K Network, a part of 50K Ventures founded by Vineet Nalla & Sanjay is a network of high net worth individuals, accredited investors, and accomplished mentors has announced its launch in Hyderabad. The sector agnostic fund is looking to fund idea and early stage startups. It aims at investing in at-least 1 startup a month. The venture has claimed that any investment will have an average bracket of $40k to $156k (INR 25 lakh to INR 1 Cr.). The company also had soft-launch in Mumbai and will be officially launching in July.
Hyderabad Angels is a network of Angel investors keen to invest in early stage businesses which have potential to create disproportionate value. They are individuals who are experienced and consists of seasoned business men and women, who are entrepreneurs themselves and who invest their own capital. These individuals have experience in all business segments in various industries and have the skill set and experience to understand a good venture from a bad one. Hyderabad Angels aim is to provide capital to worthy startups and at the same time provide an opportunity for Angel investors to make money through networking, mentoring and education.
Parampara is an initiative to encourage entrepreneurs with Ingenious Ideas, handhold them in evolving the Ideas to successful Businesses, it is a Platform for disruptive ideas to meet Success. Investment mantra or USP (Unique Selling Point) of the fund is to be participative in nature, they mentor and advises entrepreneurs on critical business skill like team building, providing strategic and operational guidance, marketing and promotion, advisories on IP and investment. The team of Parampara is strongly committed towards Startup culture and has decades of expertise on Technology, Operational Management, Financial, Business Strategy Domains.
Sashi Reddi, an active angel investor interested in startups in India, the US, and the UK, invests through a seed fund called SRI Capital. Its investment size ranges from $50,000 to $500k in the seed round for a significant minority stake in the company. Sashi basically invests in any situation where there is an entrepreneur with a vision who would like to leverage funds, experience, and network to build a successful business. Few of his investment companies include numbermall.com, Shephertz.com, hellocurry.in, yupptv.com, bank-smarts.com and imomentous.com.
Unitus Seed Fund is a seed stage venture fund which invests in developing markets with primary aim on rural startups focusing on low income groups. They help startups “prepare for growth” via seed funding, strategic and operating support, providing critical connections, and securing growth capital. Unitus Seed Capital has invested in more than 10 companies and is pretty active in Hyderabad startup ecosystem. A few of its investments including LabInApp, jiffstore, iSTAR, Caravan, Blowhorn, Hippocampus Learning Centres, AddressHealth and mGaadi.
BitChemy Ventures is a seed stage venture capital fund and a technology incubator. The firm invests primarily in technology startups that build innovative and disruptive products, internet services, enterprise software, mobile technologies, data analytics, big data, internet of things. It has made investments in companies such as Cafyne, 3LOQ, Altiux, Martmobi (acquisition), eKincare and Channelyst.
Lead Angels Network is a platform for angel investing and supporting early stage companies. It focuses at assisting investment into early stage ideas and companies founded by students and alumni of premier institutions. They also work closely with these institutions, their incubators, alumni associations and student entrepreneurship cells. The investment process also enables companies to get feedback on their business model and future plans. The have invested in companies like MyLabYogi.com and MyCuteOffice.
Ineda venture group are a venture group who focus on early stage entrepreneurial ideas, individuals, teams and businesses. They believe in promoting passionate ideas, teams and startups to create scalable and effective solutions. To accomplish this they leverage a combination of Intellectual capital, advisory capital and venture capital to support early stage as well as mid stage startups and SMEs. They are a new blend of investor, incubator and venture advisory firm. Their Charter is to provide inspiration, encouragement, mentorship, incubation, investment, management or advice to startups at various stages in their evolution in pursuit of greater scalability, profitability and valuation. Few of their portfolio companies that are in different stages of Investment, Incubation, Acceleration and Growth period include Bizkloud, AKG China, Ijinni, Cloudeyes, Omnivea, Cake Mall and Eagal Clean.
Srijan provides seed stage investment to technology startups. We target startups that are based out of India, or have India as a target market. They focus on areas such as Ecommerce, SAAS, Mobile, Social Media, and Consumer Internet startups. They invest in incubation and angel/seed rounds which varies between 2 to 10 Lacs. Meanwhile in incubation round, it varies between 10 to 15 Lacs or seed round of 1 to 2 Cr. Their investments include 3 aspects Product, Customer Acquisition, and Capital. The company also incubate startups, where they put in the idea, the team, and work in execution at co-founder level; invests between 20 to 40 lacs done only once a year. The company has invested in startups including Venturesity and Explara.
CoworkZone provides private cabins with seating space for an officer and 2 assistants / partners. In case one wants to hire more employees, than they can always hire a shared desk(s).
The Valley co-working space is all about promoting community and collaboration. They believe in building a community of like-minded doers visionaries, change makers and problem solvers. According to The Valley, “ Epic stuff happens where more than one motivated person gathers with the intention to work and create shared value for the benefit of the community.”
HatchStation is an ecosystem for startups to co-work, live and prosper from ideation to profitable ventures. They believe in flocking resources. They are a group of ideators, technologist, designers, startup junkies and investors, who not just love startups but live in it.
Rent A Desk offers solutions and networking opportunities with the right infrastructure to think about better ideas and work it out without paying much expence. Rent A Desk allows you to develop a structured work schedule in a secure office space with a formal conference room for meetings and additional option of renting an entire room for team work.
iKeva is a workspace provider with community and member benefits. They provide various facilities such as high quality office infrastructure, members access to a high energy environment, multiple options to network and learn. They have designed their space in such a way that will make work-life productive, efficient and fun-filled.
Collab House is a space where individuals and organizations make things, grow their skills, business, in a collaborative, community backed environment. It supports hacker, maker, startup and creative activity. Collab House promote technical, scientific and artistic skills through projects, collaboration and education including. Besides, it also helps in encouraging research, knowledge exchange, learning and mentoring with each other and the community.
91springboard is a startup growth hub who are committed to making the startup journey easier and more fun through coworking, community and capital. They provide facilities such as physical infrastructure, internet, printing, phone, security, and power backup without the hassle of managing it.
iHub offers affordable and flexible serviced office and virtual offices for startups with no long term lease. It also offers the additional services such as incorporation of companies, IT legal advice, web development, SEO/SEM and Cloud Application development.
Jack Your StartUp is all a startup needs, right from co-working spaces to Mentoring. They help in building a dream startup.
TiE SmashUp is a quarterly early stage startup event. With inspring keynotes, bootcamps discussing key early stage challenges, networking sessions and funding pitches.
The August Fest is an event that celebrates Art and Entrpreneurship in India. One can meet like minded Innovators, Trail Blazers, Entrepreneurs, Film Makers, Musicians and other creative professionals to bond, connect and share ideas.
IN50hrs is an idea to prototype event conducted by The Startup Centre, which curates and pushes your startup idea to accelerate. If one wants to be a technology entrepreneur, this is a perfect event to start working with the ideas.
Microsoft BizSpark India Startup Challenge is an annual event which provides a platform to identify and promote upcoming promising startups in India who are providing a product in the field of connected devices and continuous services.
It is a unique opportunity for the companies in Product ecosystem to create a buzz. Over the last few years NASSCOM Product Conclave has become a must-attend event for software industry. City events are prelude to the annual conclave.
A few other good events that are hosted in Hyderabad includes HackMania, Design Summit, HyderabadHackers, HYSEA, Headstart Higher, Startup Saturday, Im Geek, ReDx Boot Camp, BioAsia Healthcare Devthon, Startup Weekend, Techsparks, CrowdFundingDeepImpact, imgeek & GIT (Girls in Technology) and Gaming Devthon.
Next, we will be covering startup ecosystem in Kochi & Ahmedabad stay tuned!
[Special thanks to Ramesh Loganathan & Anurag Singh who helped us put together this post]
This is part of our special series, In Focus: Indian Startup Hubs, in which we highlight the numerous established as well as upcoming startup hubs in the Indian Tech Ecosystem!