Two new funds are being launched for Indian and the US, with a combined corpus of about $ 244 million to invest in the early-stage and late-stage technology ventures by a Silicon Valley-based Indian entrepreneur and investor Amit Rathore along with two other US-based investors.
A small scale venture-capital firm is launched by Rathore, the founder of Silicon Valley-based digital publication start-up, Quintype, along with the US investors Gunther Sonnenfeld and Andrew Markell called Higher Order VC, which is launching the two new funds.
Raghav Bahl, founder of Quintillion Media Pvt. Ltd, was an early investor in Quintype.
A majority of commitments from limited partners (LPs) for both the funds, called Return Capital I and II, which will invest in tech-based ventures, in areas including data analytics, digital media and technology products were received after Rathore said “the funds should be closed by July” in an interview. Other partners based out of London, Hong Kong and India will manage the funds in Higher Order VC.
Rathore said, “The first fund will mostly invest in early-stage firms and when these start-ups start to raise their next round, we would like to keep our percentage or double down, which will come from the second fund. If the ideas are growing fast, we’ll invest from the second fund,” adding that his funds were ready to be deployed and would soon start investing in early-stage ventures.
Rathore added, “These two funds are going to invest in early-stage and late-stage ventures. It will be a data-driven funnel of funds,”.
The time it takes for early-stage ventures to scale up, will aim to crunch Return Capital I and II, said Rathore. “We believe that the time-cycle of average start-ups should go down from seven years to perhaps five years or four years in this Internet age. We want to use data to potentially increase returns in venture capital,” he said, adding that the ticket sizes of each deal will not be very large.
“We won’t be doing $10-20 million rounds anytime soon,” he added. Digital media is one of the areas that Rathore want to bet big. “Media has been our focus—I’m very passionate about journalism,” he said.
The global funding environment is witnessing a significant uptick at the time of the launch of the two new funds, especially in the backdrop of Softbank’s latest mammoth $100-billion Vision Fund—which has, in turn, triggered concerns by large funding rounds of a potential bubble being created that are being led by the Japanese investment giant.
With both Flipkart and Paytm having raised $1.4 billion, the Indian start-up ecosystem have also seen its share of large funding rounds already this year each from blue-chip investors such as Tencent Holdings and SoftBank, among others.
Rathore’s start-up Quintype had raised $3.25 million in 2015 by investors led by Raghav Bahl and the Series A funding is in process. Rathore said, he will take a backseat from running Quintype once the new funds are fully operational.