Equanimity Investments raising debut $15 mn VC fund
Photo Credit: Shah Junaid/VCCircle

Venture capital firm Equanimity Investments is raising Rs 100 crore ($15.3 million) for its debut fund to invest in early-stage startups, its founder Rajesh Sehgal told VCCircle.

The fund, which has already raised about Rs 60 crore, has a greenshoe option to secure an additional Rs 100 crore, Sehgal said.

Its Limited Partners (LPs) include Mark Mobius of the Templeton Emerging Markets Group, and Vijay Advani, president of Nuveen, US, said Equanimity in a statement separately.

The fund is sector-agnostic and will look at investments in early-stage companies that use technology as their backbone ensuring scalability and sustainability of their business models. The fund horizon will span seven years and will be extendable by two years.

The fund will primarily focus on ventures within India but it will also look to invest in startup and growth ventures abroad, the statement said.

Sehgal, a former senior director and head of private equity for South Asia, Middle East and Africa for Franklin Templeton India, has invested in 22 startups since 2007 in his personal capacity. He has exited eight of them, including online certificate course provider EduPristine, refurbished good e-tailer GreenDust, wearables firm Dhama Innovations, mobile marketing startup Zipdial, English language training firm Speak Well Skills Academy, automation solutions firm Textual Analytics, after-service bike startup Express Bike Works, and offers and deals platform Squeakee.

The statement also said that Equanimity Investments is partnering with Sanctum Wealth Management to help clients diversify their portfolios by investing in early-stage startups.

“At Sanctum, we have always placed emphasis on generating new ideas and have consistently worked towards developing innovative and relevant products for clients," said Shiv Gupta, chief executive officer, Sanctum Wealth Management. "Through our association with Equanimity, we will help clients partner in projects within India’s budding startup industry," he added.

VC fundraising spree

Equanimity Investments joins a bunch of top global and homegrown new and old VC firms to have either raised new funds or topped their old India-focussed funds in recent months, despite a slowdown in dealmaking from the highs of 2015.

Early in July, SAIF Advisors Pvt. Ltd raised $350 million (Rs 2,247 crore) for its third India-focussed vehicle.

In June, global venture capital firm Sequoia Capital had topped up its fourth India-focussed fund for the second time by $125 million after closing its first India fund worth $920 million only a year ago.

Meanwhile, a crop of homegrown new early-stage VC funds including Fireside Ventures, Stellaris Venture Partners and Endiya Partners have marked either the first or the final closing of their funds this year.

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