Iron Pillar gets Allana Group commitment for second fund, strengthens team
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Mid stage focused venture capital firm Iron Pillar on Tuesday said it has received $10 million (Rs 74 crore) for its second fund from Allana Group, an Indian exporter of processed food products and agro commodities. 

Adil Allana, supervisory board member of the group, will join Iron Pillar as a board partner, said the venture capital firm in a statement.  

The 150-year-old Allana Group has manufacturing and distribution in 20 countries. It had launched its corporate venture arm in 2017 and has invested in companies such as LT Foods, Wellness Forever as well as in Freshtohome, a portfolio firm of Iron Pillar. 

Anand Prasanna, managing partner of Iron Pillar, said that the investment from Allana was the logical next step for the venture capital firm to take its partnership with the group forward to support many more of its portfolio companies. 

"As we continue to build Iron Pillar, we look forward to collaborating with more large Indian and global business groups that can help our portfolio companies improve their operations and expand across the US, Middle East and Asia Pacific," added Prasanna. 

In December last year, Iron Pillar had announced its debut investment from its second fund in CoreStack, a cloud governance and compliance software-as-a-software (SaaS) startup. Later in February this year, the fund made its second bet by investing in US-based no-code automation company Ushur. Iron Pillar has not revealed the total targeted corpus of its second fund. 

Earlier in February this year, Sameer Nath, co-founder of Iron Pillar, also floated his own mid-stage focused investment firm TrueScale Capital. VCCircle wrote at that time that TrueScale's mandate is uncannily similar to that of Iron Pillar as it also plans to invest in companies at the Series B and C stages across consumer and enterprise technology sectors.  

Iron Pillar also said in the latest statement that it has added three senior professionals to its investment team -- Sajid Fazalbhoy as partner, Pavan Gupte as a board partner and Rahul Garg as principal. 

Fazalbhoy was previously with Blume Ventures. Gupte has more than 20 years of alternative investments experience with firms like CVCI, KKR and Hermes GPE. Garg was previously with Kalaari Capital and Lehman Brothers. 

Iron Pillar, one of the few mid-stage technology investors in India, had marked the final close of its debut fund at $90 million in October 2018. It had topped up its debut fund with $45 million in May last year to help portfolio firms tide over the coronavirus crisis. 

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