Blue Ashva Capital, an investment firm focused on SMEs and startups, on Monday said it has raised INR 454 Cr ($60 Mn) for the initial close of its maiden fund. The investors include family offices and high net worth individuals.
SEBI registered Category II Alternative Investment Fund proposes to raise INR 400 crore, with a greenshoe option of INR 200 crore. It has exercised a part of the greenshoe option at the initial close.
The fund will invest in businesses across sectors like finance, technology, healthcare, consumer, manufacturing among others through equity, debt or a combination of the two. The fund will also back professional-turn-entrepreneurs and partner with global companies to invest in India.
Blue Ashva Capital, founded by Satya Bansal, former CEO of Barclays Private Bank in India for more than a decade, is said to be backing sustainable and profitable businesses which are solving real challenges in sectors such as decarbonisation, circular economy and SMEs. The firm is based out of Singapore and India. It also has a presence in the US and Israel, where it is said to be exploring possibilities for taking innovation to the market, which could be useful in India.
“SMEs and Startups play a key role in fostering entrepreneurship and generating large scale livelihood opportunities. However, with so much gloom and doom around, most such businesses are currently going through challenging times. There is a need now, more than ever, to support passionate founders with optimistic capital that is willing to bet on the long term,” said Satya Bansal on the developments.
The development comes at a time when the valuation of Indian startups is expected to take a hit, due to the Covid-19 pandemic. According to a report by management consultant Duff and Phelps, this could also affect ongoing deals, as the rest of the year could see many companies go for down-rounds for financing.
Inc42 in its report, ‘Startup Graveyard: $760 Mn Worth Venture Capital Lost In Indian Startup Shutdowns’, took a deep dive into the bloodbath. Out of 3.1K Indian startups funded between 2014 and June 2020, 385 startups have shut down operations.
SME’s have also been affected by the disruptions caused by the lockdown, with progressively falling revenues forcing a lot of them to embrace technology, according to a survey by Google India.