Foreign fund house, JP Morgan Asset Management is believed to be the frontrunner to buy early stage investor Canaan Partners’ India portfolio for more than $200 Mn. This will be the largest secondary portfolio sale in India’s private equity and venture capital market.
According to the ET report, at least three other investment firms including Delhi-based Madison India Capital have also submitted bids to buy Canaan’s India portfolio. Avneet Kochar, regional adviser for private equity at JP Morgan Asset Management and who is leading the deal discussions for the fund house, has also met the founders of Canaan’s portfolio companies.
The person familiar with the development said, “The deal is in advanced stages of discussion. It is being done by one of their (Canaan’s) US-based limited partners.” The Details with respect to whether the sale will involve all 13 companies are still being worked out, said a second person with direct knowledge of developments.
Canaan Partners has invested $200 Mn in more than 15 startups in India since 2006, including in Matrimony.com, CarTrade, Naaptol, Happiest Minds Technologies, Iyogi and Equitas Holdings. However, the venture firm had ceased its operations in the country late last year.
Alok Mittal, Managing Director, Canaan Partners India resigned from the company to start his own venture and also disassociated himself with the Canaan’s portfolio companies in future. Besides, Rahul Khanna MD at Canaan India had also announced plans to launch his own fund Trifecta Capital Partners in partnership with Nilesh Kothari, a former mergers and acquisitions (M&As) head of Accenture Plc in India for which he was raising INR 300 Cr.
Earlier in October last year, Canaan’s new global venture capital fund had raised $675 Mn. Based out in Menlo Park, California, Canaan had started investing in India in 2006. The venture firm invests in visionary entrepreneurs and provides them the networks, insights and operational guidance required to build high-performance technology and healthcare companies.
With $3.5 Bn under management and a worldwide footprint, the firm is committed to catalyzing the growth of innovative digital media, communications & mobility, enterprise, cleantech, biopharmaceuticals, medical device, diagnostics and healthcare infrastructure companies. Canaan has offices in California, New York, Connecticut, India and Israel.