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With an objective to capture the dealflow in Northern India, India’s largest private equity fund ICICI Venture has opened an office in Delhi. This is the first investment office outside Mumbai for ICICI Venture, which has about $2.5 billion assets under management. The firm, which employs 130 people in total, has an office in Bangalore too, but it is largely for administrative and legal functions.

The Delhi office will have two senior directors, which include Sandeep Malhotra, Senior Director in charge of business development nationally, and Pradeep Varshney, Senior Director, who will lead the real estate investments in the northern India. Besides them, the Delhi office will have about seven people at VP, associate and analyst levels.

ICICI Venture is currently on the road to raise three funds totalling $5-6 billion - a real estate fund of $1-1.5 billion, the infrastructure fund of $1 billion and a private equity fund of $1.5-2 billion.          The opening of Delhi office is significant as the fund will be able to extend its investment reach to places like Chandigarh, Himachal Pradesh, and Kanpur. Delhi is headquarters for large funds like ChrysCapital ($2.25 billion under management) and Baring India Private Equity (about $700 million).

Malhotra, prior to joining I-Venture in 2007, spent close to 16 years with parent ICICI Bank in various roles. His most recent position within the bank was as General Manager, Corporate Banking – Northern Region. Malhotra was looking after commercial banking, investment banking, project finance and structure finance in the region. He is looking to generate dealflow for the private equity fund.

Varshney, who leads the Real Estate Land-Banking practice and the Projects Management & Monitoring practice, joined ICICI Venture in 2007. Varshney has over 22 years of experience across real estate, sales and marketing. Prior to joining I-Venture, he was a Director at IREO, a $1 billion Real Estate Fund in New Delhi. Before that he was Senior Vice President (Business Development and Marketing) at DLF, a leading real estate developer in India with close to 1,000 million square feet of existing development and planned projects. Pradeep also spent over 10 years across various management roles in Ansal Group, one of India’s leading civil construction and real estate firms.

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