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Alternative Market Briefing

Hedge funds are looking into India’s startup scene

Thursday, May 07, 2015

Komfie Manalo, Opalesque Asia:

Hedge funds are drawn to India’s startup firms Bloomberg reported that at least 14 hedge fund firms, including Falcon Edge Capital of New York, Maverick Capital from Dallas, Hong Kong’s Tybourne Capital Management and Steadview Capital Management, have invested some $3.8bn into 26 Indian technology and e-commerce startups since 2014.

Aashish Bhinde, executive director of Mumbai-based Avendus Capital Ltd, India’s most active adviser on e-commerce funding, commented, "After Alibaba’s IPO, funds began looking out for a frontier market where that story will be repeated. India is the clear answer."

Private equity giants are also forming a beeline in India’s startups, including Warburg Pincus, Carlyle Group LP, as well as Iconiq Capital, the San Francisco firm that manages money for Mark Zuckerberg and Sheryl Sandberg of Facebook Inc. Alibaba Group’s founder Jack Ma was also reported to have visited India to look for investment opportunities.

Ravi Gururaj, a Bengaluru-based angel investor with holdings in more than 20 startups, told Bloomberg, "Hedge funds are tempted to jump into early-stage funding rounds, which was the exclusive territory of venture capital funds. Valuations are stepping up so fast between rounds that they feel compelled to come in early or get priced out in their traditional rounds......................

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