Venture capital firm 9Unicorns has unveiled a student-focused VC fund called campus fund, to invest in early-stage startups on college campuses.
The sector-agnostic fund plans to write cheque sizes ranging from $50,000 to $75,000 each in about 20-odd startups every year.
9Unicorns will be appointing scouts across 23 institutes IIT’s and IIMs to evaluate ideas before writing the cheque. Besides, the fund aims to give a second option to the students to launch their startup before passing out of the college.
“Colleges are the hotbed of innovations. The idea is to sensitise the students about the startup ecosystem and enable them to be a part of it right from the beginning. Besides, several institutes these days have started entrepreneurship-focused courses, proving that India is fast emerging as the land of startups. We are targeting concept-stage startups, which we will mentor and nurture further.” Dr. Apoorva Ranjan Sharma, co-founder & president at 9Unicorns, said.
Dr.Sharma added, “For us, it could be two strokes of luck as we get closer to concept stage startups and be able to invest in the future Unicorns”.
Venture Catalysts, an early-stage incubator, the parent firm of 9Unicorns have invested in Vested finance, a startup focused on investing in US equities.
The firm was conceptualized by founders while they were in college.
While a new concept in India, countries with developed startup ecosystem have dozens of funds that specialise investing in companies founded on campus, Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg being the most popular example.