Nepal-based conglomerate CG Corp Global has launched a new fund Prestellar Ventures, with a corpus of $100 Mn. The company has joined hands with three other investors to launch the VC fund. As per reports, the fund will be used to invest in promising new startups in India, Sri Lanka, Nepal and Bangladesh.
The Singapore-based fund, Prestellar Ventures, is currently backed by Satin Creditcare, private equity investment firm Frontline Strategy, and Nepal-headquartered N.E. Group, apart from CG Corp Global.
Commenting on the development, Binod Chaudhary, Chairman of CG Corp Global and Director of Prestellar Ventures said, “This ambitious fund aims to invest in products and projects which will enhance and improve people’s lives on a large scale in the identified countries. Investing in the forefront of innovation is critical to keep traditional businesses such as CG Corp Global relevant in the future.”
According to Binod, the $100 Mn fund will be used to launch country-specific sub-funds for India, Sri Lanka, Nepal, and Bangladesh. Prestellar Ventures is currently looking at early-stage tech startups in a variety of sectors such as financial services, hospitality, consumer technology, and rural products and services.
The average ticket size of investment will range somewhere between $2 Mn and $3 Mn, according to sources.
Overview Of Satin Creditcare, Frontline Strategy & CG Corp
Established in 1990, Satin Creditcare is a microfinance institution with a strong presence in North India. It provides collateral-free microcredit facilities to entrepreneurial women in both rural and semi-urban areas around the country. The institution also offers loans to individual businesses, SMEs and MSMEs. Operating in more than 16 states and union territories in India, Satin Creditcare has recently started providing financing in the affordable housing segment.
Based in Mauritius, Frontline Strategy is a private equity investment firm that offers growth capital and assistance to businesses in India. It mainly invests in pre-venture capital stage companies. At present, it manages three funds: the Strategic Ventures Fund Mauritius Limited (SVFML), the India Industrial Growth Fund (IIGF), and the CCube Angel Network (CCube). The firm is currently looking to expand operations in the US, Singapore, and other parts of Southeast Asia.
Founded in 1972 as an importer of textile and consumer products, the N.E. Group has grown into a full-fledged industrial and trading house with a diverse portfolio that includes manufacturing, international trade, project development tourism, banking and insurance. It is currently based in Nepal.
With a legacy that spans more than 83 years, CG Corp Global is a multinational conglomerate headquartered in Nepal. It currently has over 136 companies in 15 business verticals, including consumer electronics, FMCGs, financial services, education, cement, hospitality, energy, biotech, EPC, and real estate. At present, it has offices in five different continents. International instant noodles brand Wai Wai is also owned by CG Corp.
Overview Of Recent India-Focussed Funds
In the beginning of July 2017, PM Narendra Modi joined hands with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to start the Israel India Innovation Initiative Fund (I4F). The fund aims to grow the business relationship between both countries. On the same day, Hemant Kanoria-founded Srei Infrastructure Finance Limited signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Russian Government-owned Vnesheconombank, as part of their initiative to launch of a $200 Mn IT and innovation fund.
Around the same time, it was reported that former Infosys CEO, Nandan Nilekani and Helion Ventures founder Sanjeev Aggarwal have joined forces to launch the Fundamentum Partnership, which will have an initial corpus of $100 Mn.
In the second week, Mumbai-headquartered 35North Ventures received a nod from SEBI to launch a $20.8 Mn (INR 130 Cr) early stage fund. The early stage fund is designed to help early stage startups grow. As per reports, the fund will look to back 8-10 early-stage startups in agritech, fintech, consumer tech, and healthtech segment.
In the third week of July 2017, Airbus Ventures revealed plans to set up a fund for aerospace and non-aerospace tech startups in India, in collaboration with Bengaluru-based Airbus Bizlab. Earlier in the same month, Assam-based Numaligarh Refinery Limited (NRL) launched a $1.5 Mn (INR 10 Cr) fund to facilitate the development of startups in Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Tripura, and Sikkim.
Recently, Bengaluru-based VC firm SAIF Partners raised a $350 Mn India-specific fund, with a focus on Internet, healthcare, education, technology, financial services, enterprise SaaS, retail, and consumer brands. As per reports, around 15%-20% of the fund will go into backing established brick-and-mortar companies. The remaining amount will be invested in early-stage and late-stage startups in the country.
With a growing number of investments, like the fund launched by CG Corp Global, it seems that the so-called dry spell of funding for Indian startups is finally nearing its end. It could also be because investors are becoming more particular about the sectors/stages of the startups they want to invest in.
(The development was reported by Livemint)