Jungle Ventures ropes in Ratan Tata in advisory role, ahead of launching second fund

Amit Anand (L) and Anurag Srivastava (R), Founding and managing partners, Jungle Ventures with Ratan Tata (C)

Singapore-based venture capital firm Jungle Ventures, said that it has roped in Ratan Tata, chairman emeritus of Tata Sons Ltd, as a special advisor.

In February, Tata had taken up a similar role with Kalaari Capital, a $350 million India-focused venture capital firm.

Founded by Anurag Srivastava and Amit Anand, Jungle Ventures, is an early stage venture capital fund, that focuses on “building innovative technology led companies out of the Asia-Pacific”.

It has already made investments in 30 Asian startups, including the likes of Zipdial (recently acquired by Twitter), LiveSpace, Tradegecko, CrayonData, Fastacash and travelmob (acquired by Nasdaq listed HomeAway).

Jungle will look to use the vast experience that Ratan Tata brings on board, as it seeks to tap opportunities in the fast growing tech and consumer sector in the region, especially as it plans to launch its second fund.

DEALSTREETASIA has learnt that Jungle is currently raising its second fund with a target of up to $100 million; but it may also opt for a final close at around the $60 million-$75 million mark, if the initial target turns to be too ambitious.

Jungle had initially raised $10 million as part of its first pan-Asian super Angel fund.  The investors in its first fund include founder of Match.com, Interwoen and Encentuate, Peng T Ong, chief executive of Space Matrix, Anuag Srivastava, founder and chief executive of JobsCentral, Lim Der Shing, former head of engineering at Skype Toivo, Annus and co-founder of Sony Entertainment Television Jayesh Parekh among others.

In his role as special advisor, Tata “has formally committed to spend time with Jungle’s portfolio of companies to help them build category leadership, while being ethically impregnable and culturally strong, in Asian and global markets,” Jungle said a statement.

Ratan Tata has independently invested in several startups including cab hailing app Ola, online retailer Snapdeal and Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi.

Anurag Srivastava, founder and managing partner at Jungle Ventures, said: “I have had the good fortune of working with Mr Tata in the past and feel honoured to have this opportunity again to work with him. With his wealth of experience, there is probably no better advisor that we can have in this part of the world, to mentor us and our portfolio of companies.”

Amit Anand, founding and managing partner, Jungle Ventures said: “ Tata, with his experience of steering India’s most respected conglomerate to one of the largest Asian born multinationals and with his personal passion for entrepreneurship, will bring immense value to us and the portfolio companies. As our companies look to become global category leaders in various markets, Mr Tata will help us and our entrepreneurs understand the economics and dynamics of those markets. It has already been a humbling experience to work with Mr Tata and we have found him to be astonishingly responsive, insightful and decisive.”

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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.