Sherpalo Ventures, the venture capital firm launched by Google board member Kavitark Ram Shriram, has exited Cleartrip Travel Services Pvt Ltd, which runs the online travel booking site Cleartrip.com. The investor has sold its entire stake in the company to Concur Technologies, a NASDAQ-listed travel and expense management solutions provider and key investor in Cleartrip, Sandeep Murthy, who till recently headed Sherpalo’s Indian operations, told Techcircle.in.
A recent TechCrunch report had stated that Concur has concluded negotiations with Sherpalo Ventures and Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (KPCB) to buy out their stake in Cleartrip. The report further added that Sherpalo and Kleiner together had around 25 per cent stake in the company.
“Sherpalo has exited Cleartrip. It has been a good investment and fits in well with our restructuring,” said Murthy.
When asked about how much return did Sherpalo make, he declined to comment, adding, “We are not talking about that. But it has been a good deal.”
Murthy, who also oversaw activities of KPCB, recently floated his own VC firm Lightbox Management Ltd. The VC firm has started operations with two funds, one of which has picked stakes in around half a dozen firms by buying existing investments of Sherpalo and KPCB through a synthetic secondary transaction.
Simultaneously, it has floated a new fund with a target corpus of $90 million (approximately Rs 540 crore) focusing on early-stage investments in consumer tech space. Lightbox has already made its first investment in Mumbai-based Individual Learning Pvt Ltd that runs Embibe.com, an online test prep portal specialising in engineering entrance exams.
Mumbai-headquartered Cleartrip is one of the top online travel firms in India, alongside Makemytrip.com, Yatra.com, and Goibibo.com. Back in 2011, Concur had invested $40 million for a minority stake in the company. Other investors in the company include DAG Ventures, and Draper Fisher Jurvetson.
(Edited by Joby Puthuparampil Johnson)