Blume Ventures eyes $50M for second VC fund

Blume Ventures, one of the most active seed stage investors in India, is planning to launch its new venture capital fund in the second half of 2014. The Mumbai-based firm, which plans to raise $50M for the second fund, is looking to raise a larger corpus to have more dry powder for follow-on rounds in its portfolio companies.

On asked about the strategy for Fund II, Blume Ventures' managing partner Sanjay Nath told VCCircle, “Fund II's seed strategy will be consistent with Fund I's and our "follow-on strategy" will be deeper. The rationale is that we are bullish on India tech and thus we would like to support our emerging winners deeper.”

Blume Ventures' debut fund raised Rs 100 crore a few years ago or around $20 million back then. Nath said that the firm will be primarily looking at overseas institution-led investors like fund of funds and corporates for its proposed fund.

It plans to keep the ticket size of investments same as in Fund I, i.e. $100-300K, with follow-on cheques being deeper, up to $2-3 million.

Blume Ventures will invest 80 per cent of the capital in traditional technology segment covering internet, mobile and media while the remaining 20 per cent would be deployed in alternative/niche tech sectors like clean tech and robotics.

"The first half of 2013 was quite slow in terms of VC activity but the India tech story is now riding a positive wave of momentum - which started with Justdial's IPO, followed by redBus (acquired by Nasper), Zomato's Series C funding - and then rounded out by Qubecell (being acquired by Boku) and Little Eye Labs (snapped by Facebook),” according to Nath.

In its portfolio comprising around 60 firms (including syndicates), Blume Ventures has seen six firms go ahead and raise further funding besides one being acquired. It is bullish on its existing portfolio and expects as many as 10 of them to raise Series A funding this year.

Blume Ventures saw its maiden exit in 2013 when Mumbai-based Spunk Media Pvt Ltd, which runs the online mobile billing aggregator Qubecell, was acquired by San Francisco-based mobile payments company Boku.

Seed-stage fund Blume Ventures has been the most aggressive early stage investor since 2011, leading the charts consistently. Founded in 2010 with a corpus of Rs 100 crore for the maiden fund, its investments are relatively smaller compared with other funds on the list but it has been consistently closing new deals.

The companies it invested last year include research platform Infollion, colour theme-focused e-commerce website Paletly, mobile consumer analytics provider Voxapp and location-based mobile services player NowFloats. Other investments include event ticketing and discovery platform Explara and online personal care and beauty products platform

Last week it opened its account for the new year by backing Mumbai-based Homeveda Media Labs Pvt Ltd, which runs an on-demand instructional video content platform in the natural health and wellness space called Homeveda.

(Edited by Joby Puthuparampil Johnson)

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