AMD plans to raise $200m India-focused tech fund

Photo by Ilya Pavlov

AMD Ventures, the venture capital arm of US-based chip maker Advanced Micro Devices Inc. (AMD), is raising an India-focused technology fund with a targeted corpus of close to $200 million, said two people directly aware of the development , on the condition of anonymity.

The India-focused fund will be an offshore entity and will operate from either Singapore or Amsterdam. The fund will follow the foreign direct investment (FDI) route to invest in technology-focused companies in India. AMD is understood to have hired law firm AZB Partners as legal advisers in India for the new fund.

AMD Ventures typically invests in strategic software and application ecosystem companies that provide services to developed and growing countries with focus on data visualization/analytics, augmented and virtual reality, machine learning and artificial intelligence.

So far, AMD ventures has invested in companies such as US-based Bluestacks, a cloud-based cross-platform products start up, and US-based InContext Solutions, a technology and market research platform, Tango, a free mobile messaging application provider.

Emails sent to AMD Ventures and AZB partners seeking comment did not elicit any response.

With this, AMD Ventures joins the rank of rival chipmaker Intel Capital, the venture capital arm of the world’s biggest chipmaker, which already has a $250 million India technology fund that was launched in the year 2005.

The VC fund has invested in companies including online marketplace Indiamart.com, travel operator Yatra Online, and software services company Happiest Minds Technologies.

It has slowed the pace of investing in Indian start-ups as part of a change in strategy, Mint reported in August 2016.

Other corporate venture funds such as Cisco Investments, Qualcomm Ventures, and Siemens India have also been active in the region.

According to US research firm CB Insights, globally, corporate venture capital (CVC) activity hit a nine-quarter low but in India, the number of deals has doubled and amount of funding rose five times in the second quarter on a sequential basis to 13 transactions worth $171 million, the report said.

“What has really changed is perhaps the culture of innovation in the country. There was a time when India as a society did not really have the courage to actually start from scratch which is where entrepreneurs got into typical employment role. Start-ups need support and venture firms are supporting them in a meaningful way. Private equity or a strategic buyer never had the risk appetite to help in creating such businesses. So it’s purely venture capital and angel investor who traditionally have been supporting this,” said Bijal Ajinkya, partner at law firm Khaitan and Co.

Santa Clara, California-based AMD develops and sells motherboards, chipsets, microprocessors for business and consumer markets.

Also Read:

Japan’s Dream Incubator to launch $44m India-focused tech fund

Indian VC firm Venture Highway plans to raise $60m new fund – Report

This article was first published on Livemint.com

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.