Nandan Nilekani, Helion’s Aggarwal float $100 mn VC fund
Nandan Nilekani and Sanjeev Aggarwal

Infosys Ltd co-founder Nandan Nilekani and Helion Ventures co-founder Sanjeev Aggarwal have teamed up to launch a venture capital fund with an initial target corpus of $100 million (Rs 650 crore) to invest in startups.

The new platform is called The Fundamentum Partnership and will focus on Series B or Series C rounds by investing $10 million to $25 million, it said in a statement.

The fund will focus on consumer technology businesses, particularly those that seek to solve unique Indian problems. It will also invest in enterprise technology and outsourcing companies serving global corporations.

“Our capital is patient. We won’t rush to exit and can stay invested for ten years. Or more,” the firm’s website said. “…We are not going to spread ourselves thin. We’ll only invest in a handful of entrepreneurs every year.”

Media reports had earlier said that Nilekani and Aggarwal will likely contribute 30-40% of the initial corpus and that the firm had raised $50 million.

Fundamentum’s team will assist portfolio founders in areas like leadership and organisation development, building scalable technology architecture and navigating important inflexion points like capitalisation and inorganic growth.

The team includes partner Ashish Kumar and associate vice president Prateek Jain and chief financial officer Sanjay Chaturvedi.

Kumar, an alumnus of IIT Kanpur, previously worked as CEO at ClayRop Wellness and Kellton Tech Solutions Ltd. He is also an angel investor. Jain had earlier founded StayGlad, which was sold to Quikr. He has also worked at e-commerce firm Junglee.com and beauty commerce startup UrbanTouch.

Chaturvedi is also the CFO at Helion. He previously worked at GE, PepsiCo and Amba Research.

Nilekani has been an active investor and usually puts in $1-2 million in each startup he backs. He has invested in firms across sectors, including aerospace startup Team Indus, telecom startup Mubble, publishing startup Juggernaut, online fundraising platform LetsVenture and logistics startup Fortigo.

The key architect of the government’s Aadhaar unique identification project, Nilekani is also an active philanthropist. He will no longer making any personal investments and will invest only through Fundamentum.

“India continues to be blessed with phenomenal entrepreneurial talent and the attempt with this platform will be to see how we can amplify their success. At Fundamentum, we are committed to building companies to last, with speed and at scale,” Nilekani said.

Agarwal, who oversees a corpus of over $600 million at Helion Venture Partners, has backed companies such as MakeMyTrip, BigBasket and ShopClues in the past.

The firm’s advisory board includes TN Hari, head of HR at online grocery startup BigBasket, and former Infosys executive Sanjay Purohit.

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