Speciale Invest, a venture capital firm focussed on deeptech and software-as-a-service (SaaS) investments, on Wednesday said it has onboarded former investment principal at Avaana Capital, Vishnu Rajeev, in a similar role in a bid to strengthen its investment team.
As an investment principal at Speciale Invest, Rajeev will focus on the VC firm’s investment strategy, helping it identify and evaluate startups operating in the mobility, climate tech and energy sectors.
In his previous stints apart from Avaana Capital, Rajeev had served as the mobility and climate-tech lead at Axilor Ventures, and as the head of clean mobility-focused Micelio Fund. He has also served on the board of startups including ElectricPe, NewTrace, The ePlane Company, among others.
Rajeev said that he will leverage his experience and network to identify and evaluate investment opportunities in the mobility, climate tech, and energy sectors.
In an earlier interaction with VCCircle, Speciale Invest’s general partner Arjun Rao had said that via its second fund, which it closed in April last year at Rs 286 crore, the VC firm is looking closely at funding startups which are focused on climate change, sustainability and energy.
The firm is also looking at alternative energy, battery recycling and other ecosystem plays that contribute better to climate management, Rao added.
Speciale Invest’s second fund overshot its target corpus on about Rs 100 crore after it raised about Rs 120 crore in April 2021, with almost all limited partners from the first fund doubling down on their investments in the second fund.
From the second fund, it aims to invest in over 20 startups through pre-seed and seed rounds, with average cheque sizes ranging from $100,000-$1 million. Speciale Invest raised its debut fund, valued around Rs 60 crore, in 2017.
Last month, the VC firm co-invested in deeptech startup Mindgrove Technologies’ seed round valued at about $2 million, along with Sequoia Capital India and Whiteboard Capital.