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Temasek, UOB inject $200 mn more into InnoVen Capital
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Venture debt firm InnoVen Capital has received an additional $200 million (Rs 1,400 crore) funding commitment from shareholders Temasek Holdings and United Overseas Bank Ltd.

Singapore state investment firm Temasek and private-sector lender UOB are committing $100 million each, InnoVen said in a statement on Tuesday.

The additional commitment will allow InnoVen to tap into the potential in the venture debt segment across Asia, the firm said.

InnoVen operates in India, China and Southeast Asia. It has supported more than 200 startups, with over $500 million in financing. 

“Access to additional equity capital along with the ability to leverage the balance sheet will position us well, as we drive an ambitious growth agenda,” said Ashish Sharma, chief executive at InnoVen Capital India.

InnoVen's India bets

The fresh commitment to InnoVen is good news for Indian startups that have been resorting to venture debt as alternative funding at a certain stage.

Venture debt is being seen as an important tool of funding for companies as it rarely involves stake dilution by promoters. It also provides companies with more time to grow.

InnoVen Capital invested about Rs 600 crore across 36 companies in 2018, registering a 28% increase in the funding amount it has deployed.

It has provided venture debt to varied companies including Swiggy, Capillary Technologies, Rentomojo, Belong, Blackbuck, Pepperfry, NestAway, ShopClues and Mswipe.

Its recent investments in India include doctor consultation startup DocsApp, scooter-sharing platform Bounce and Xpressbees, the Alibaba Group-backed e-commerce logistics company.

Notably, in 2017, InnoVen Capital had invested Rs 100 crore in travel portal Yatra.com to mark its biggest venture debt deal till date. Last year, Sharma had told VCCircle that InnoVen has the appetite to write larger cheques.

In the same year, the company also saw a management churn with CEO Ajay Hattangdi and another key executive Vinod Murali leaving in quick succession. The duo has since started their own venture debt firm Alteria Capital Advisors LLP.

Sharma was appointed new chief executive officer of its Indian operations in October 2017.

Temasek and Singapore-based lender UOB had acquired Nasdaq-listed diversified financial services company SVB Financial Group’s specialty finance business focussed on venture debt in early 2015. SVB India Finance was then renamed as InnoVen Capital Group.

Another major player in the venture debt space is Trifecta Capital, which has backed 40 companies including BigBasket, Paper Boat and Rivigo from its Rs 500-crore maiden fund. The company has been raising capital for its second fund.

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