As the third-largest start-up ecosystem in the world, India is home to over 42,000 of them. Venture Catalysts, the country’s first and biggest integrated incubator, which is also among Asia’s top three, has mastered the art of identifying the right ones. The incubator has invested Rs 500 crore across 63 deals in 2019, with 30 successful exits in less than 4 years.
Venture Catalysts is India’s first integrated incubator that invests $250K – $1.5 million in early-stage start-ups with the potential to create enduring value for over a long period. Since 2016, more than 14,000 start-ups across 27 cities have reached out to Venture Catalysts for mentorship and training entrepreneurs in the right direction. The platform, with its vast network of over 5000 angels spread across tie-2 and tier-3 cities, has closed 171 deals so far with portfolio investments reaching $1.7 billion in valuation. It has also given returns in the multiple of 3x to 70x- a phenomenon unheard of in any other asset class.
Speaking on the performance, Dr. Apoorva Ranjan Sharma, President, and Co-founder of Venture Catalysts, said, “Venture Catalysts identified the investment potential among High Net Worth Individuals (HNIs) from small towns who, till a few years ago, invested only in stock markets and real estate. But, since the sub-prime crisis of 2008, this category of investors was looking for a new class of assets that could give them better ROI.”
Apart from the HNIs, Venture Catalysts portfolio has gained the trust of some of the biggest names from the corporate world through its business model. These include 40+ renowned and international companies such as Google Inc, Jade Value, Axis Capital, Wavemaker, Amalthea Capital & Founders Factory co-invested among others.
With an aim to bridge the gap between India and Bharat, Venture Catalysts focuses on entrepreneurs from tier-2 and tier-3 cities. Start-ups funded by Venture Catalysts employed over 2,165 people directly. The fund has so far invested in 11 companies giving wings to more than 31,600 micro-entrepreneurs. Some of the names include Cleansecar.com, Cleardekho, Supr, Rare Planet, Fashor and Playtoome among others.
Venture Catalysts has also facilitated over 2 million SMEs by helping them manage supply chains and revenue leakages. About 14 portfolio companies funded by Venture Catalysts including BharatPe, nupay, Blowhorn, Coutloot, Adurcup, and Jumpstart have helped the SMEs in managing payments and their working capital needs. Meanwhile, about 7 fintech companies such as LenDenClub, Home Capital, Ideal Insurance, LiquiLoans and OTO Capital financed by Venture Catalysts, enabled over 20 million UPI transactions amounting to $19 million in microloans and deep distribution of insurance.