Elev8 Venture Partners (Elev8), led by former Kae Capital partner Navin Honagudi, on Thursday announced the launch of its maiden $200 million sector agnostic fund.
The maiden fund will be investing in growth-stage, technology-driven companies with a ticket size between $5-15 million. Elev8 will primarily enter at Series B and C rounds in growth stage tech companies.
The fund has received an AIF Cat II license from SEBI (Securities and Exchange Board of India) and also includes a green-shoe option.
Co-founded and led by Honagudi, he had previously worked as a partner at Kae Capital for over a decade. He has primarily backed companies in segments like consumer internet, enterprise, fintech, edtech and healthtech. Before joining Kae Capital, Honagudi worked in the corporate venture of Reliance and has been part of early internet investments.
Elev8 will also be backed by the early-stage investment platform Venture Catalysts.
Venture Catalysts will be the institutional backer of Elev8. This is the fourth fund backed by the firm. However, Venture Catalysts did not disclose the investment value.
Elev8 will partner with seed funds, which have missed out on investing over $500 million of pro rata capital in 2021 alone for their successful portfolio companies, the firm said.
The firm claims that the maiden fund is India's first Pro-Rata fund, which provides access to oversubscribed rounds alongside top-tier investors. Inspired by similar successful structures exist in the US and Europe.
The fund’s strategy includes partnering with seed funds, which have missed out on investing over $500 million of pro rata capital in 2021 alone for their successful portfolio companies.
“Even though liquidity in technology investments is drying up, Elev8 has received overwhelming LP interest as well as partnership avenues with seed funds, as the current vintage offers an excellent opportunity to invest in growth stage companies and earn/target attractive returns. We are in an advanced stage of discussions to establish several global partnerships, which going forward will help our portfolio companies expand beyond India during their growth phase,” Honagudi said in a statement.
Elev8 said it will be leveraging the team's advantage of having access to high-quality deals at the growth stage, where Elev8 claims to have built proprietary data-driven algorithms in its investment framework, providing LPs (Limited Partners) with visibility into Elev8's capital deployment strategy.
Some of the past investments of the Elev8 team include fintech company Paytm, intracity logistic marketplace Shiprocket, edtech platform Vedantu, agritech platform Reshamandi and other startups like Bharatpe, Kenko, BluSmart, Beardo, Niyo, Goat, Airmeet, Toch and Zypp.
Partner at Elev8 and co-founder, Venture Catalyst CA Anuj Golecha said there is a whitespace of domestic growth stage VC funds with the requisite experience. “Elev8 considerably reduces risk by entering the growth stage, where companies have demonstrated product-market fit, resilience during downturns, and strong founders capable of driving their companies in the right direction irrespective of market conditions.”
Venture Catalysts Group’s total AUM (assets under management) stands at $450 million, founded in 2016 by Dr Apoorva Ranjan Sharma, Anil Jain, CA Anuj Golecha and Gaurav Jain, the Mumbai-headquarter group also includes 9Unicorns accelerator fund, Beams Fintech fund and over 5,000-member angel network with a portfolio of over 300 companies.