Hyderabad-based venture capital firm Silverneedle Ventures, floated by former executives of investment platform Xseed Partners, has launched its first category-I alternative investment fund (AIF) with a target corpus of Rs 100 crore (around $12 million) to invest in early-stage startups.
The sector-agnostic technology fund will evaluate portfolios in segments across B2B (business-to-business), SaaS (software-as-a-service), Internet of things (IoT), Web3, blockchain, pharma and deeptech sectors, said Ajay Jain, co-founder and managing partner at Silverneedle Ventures.
The fund, which received approval from markets regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) in August this year, has already started deploying capital with plans to lead investments in pre-Series A and Series A rounds.
It has made the first investment in Gurugram’s creator monetization platform Knorish in a pre-Series A round, which was also participated by Bharat Serum family office, Inflection Point Ventures, Mumbai Angels and Jet Synthesys and Avendus Alternate Strategies' CEO Andrew Holland.
The fund’s sweet spot for investing will range between Rs 1 crore and Rs 6 crore per deal and Silverneedle aims to back 30 startups through the fund over a period of 3-5 years, Jain said.
Silverneedle Ventures was floated this year by Jain along with Deepesh Agarwal, both former co-founders at Xseed Partners. Silverneedle Ventures is backed by domestic and global investors which include family offices and institutional investors.
“We are looking at the funding winter in a positive manner. At this early stage we will be backing the founders. Prior to our investments, we look at the market size and also look at the company’s future disruptions. We are clear that we will be deploying our capital in companies with clear capital allocation sense,” Jain added.
Silverneedle Ventures joins the league of several such new funds entering India's early-stage investment space. Recently, VCCircle reported the launch of early-stage focused SphitiCap’s maiden venture fund with an aim to raise a corpus of around $500 million, targeting enterprises focused on sustainability, growth and impact.
With a global shift towards tech-based sustainability solutions, many venture funds have ramped up investment in such sectors, including Ankur Capital, which rolled out a new platform in August. The fund’s platform ‘Day Zero’ will invest up to $1 million in early-stage startups focused on agriculture, health, SMB SaaS, fintech, logistics, and mobility sectors, among others.