India: Venture Catalysts’ fund 9Unicorns increases corpus target to $68m

Photo: Reuters

Indian sweets and snacks manufacturer Haldirams participated in the second close of Rs100 crore of accelerator fund 9Unicorns, which looks to invest in early-stage Indian startups.

The second close, which saw participation from Indian industrialists and businesses, has led to 9Unicorns now increasing its corpus target to Rs500 crore for its ongoing fundraise, exercising a green-shoe option.

9Unicorns, the accelerator fund of startup incubation platform, Venture Catalysts announced its first close of Rs100 crore in August last year, totalling the fund size to Rs200 crore, at present.

“Our investment in 9Unicorns weaves well with our ideology of active contribution to the coming of age startup universe in India. With this collaboration we look forward to partnering actively with the 9Unicorns team to bear our experiences and mentoring the innovative digitally run 9unicorns investees,” said Kamal Agrawal, executive director, Haldiram Foods International Ltd.

9Unicorns is looking to raise the entire amount of Rs500 crore over the next few months from multiple corporations, family offices, and institutions globally. The fund plans to write the first external cheque in over 100 early-stage startups across segments of deeptech, software-as-a-service (SaaS), fintech, insurtech, healthtech, and edtech, among others.

“Last year was indeed a great year for the startup ecosystem that witnessed the creation of 11 unicorns. As a fund, we aim to back early-stage companies that have the potential to become billion-dollar companies in the future. I anticipate the number of unicorns in India will grow 4x, from 44 today in the next few years that provides several investors with an opportunity to be a supporting agent and ensure multiple X returns from this emerging asset class,” said Apoorva Ranjan Sharma, co-founder of Venture Catalysts.

Last year, 9Unicorns invested in over 32 startups, and looks to invest around $1,00,000 for 5-7% equity per startup at the idea stage.

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.