Tokyo-based technology-focussed venture capital fund Jafco Asia has closed its $100-million fifth fund, Jafco Asia Technology Fund V, which will invest in tech companies in South Asian countries, including India.
“We have closed our fifth fund which will be deployed on a pan-Asian basis including India,” Jafco Asia, South Asia Deputy Head and Associate Director RJ Sridhar told VCCircle. “While we continue to actively focus on the technology sector which is our traditional forte, about 50% of the investments from the new fund are likely to be made in other, non-IT sectors. We see good opportunities in rapidly growing areas such as consumer, education and healthcare and the expanded mandate of the latest fund allows us the flexibility to capitalize on those. About 20% of the fund is purely for investing in companies in the South Asian geographies,” he said.
Jafco is in the final stages of investing in at least two companies in India. The deals will be announced in the next three months and the deal size would be in the range of $3-4 million, Sridhar said. Though Jafco Asia does not have an office in India, it has invested in eight companies since 2006 including online education provider Vriti Infocom and loan origination portal Apnapaisa (earlier called Apnaloan).
Vriti Infocom Private Limited, an exam preparation platform company, raised $5 million in series-B funding led by Jafco Asia along with a follow-on investment from existing backer Intel Capital. Jafco Asia along with domestic VC firm VenturEast invested close to $13 million into Bangalore-based Si2 Microsystems.
Jafco Asia is part of Jafco, one of Japan's largest private equity funds which is also listed on the Tokyo Stock Exchange. Jafco has till date seen more than 800 companies backed by its funds float IPOs. Through various funds it invests in companies starting from the incubation stage to buyouts. Its VC arm typically invests $2-4 million in a single investment.