8i Ventures, an India-based early-stage venture capital fund focused on fintech & commerce, announces the first close of its $50 million second fund. The fund has raised 50 per cent of its targeted AUM and achieved the first close of $25 million, raised largely from family offices like Salgaocars and Kothari (DSP) who were also invested in 8i Venture’s first fund.
It was founded in 2019 by Vikram Chachra & Vishwanath V, 8i Ventures and has emerged as one of the top-performing VC funds in the region. The firm scored one of the highest venture exits in India in April this year, when it partially exited a seed investment in its portfolio company – M2P, at a 36X multiple over 2 years.
Vikram Chachra, Founding Partner, 8i Ventures said, “We believe fintech is the single largest venture opportunity in India. Every single friction point in India’s financial economy is a potential billion-dollar start-up opportunity. Our key insight when we launched Fund I, was that consumer payments and commerce is a trillion-dollar opportunity. Since then, digital payments have swelled from US$200 billion a year to US$720 billion now. With Fund II, we have an added focus on B2B fintech and commerce - which we believe to be the next trillion-dollar market in India.”
“At 8i, we wrote the first cheque into several outliers that at inception, were unobvious winners. That’s because we partnered with founders targeting under-served categories, ignored by incumbents/industry players. Collectively, our Fund I portfolio winners already process US$18 billion of payments annually, while generating US$100 million in gross profits, between them.” said Vishwanath V, General Partner, 8i Ventures. “
For Fund II, we will follow the same thesis, but with a larger ownership across our investments. We are seeding companies with US$1.5 million - US$2 million cheques, going up to US$10 million across subsequent rounds.”
The founder partners at 8i are ex-operators with a well-established track record of seeding category winners across fintech and consumer sectors. The firm’s first fund is up 270per cent with a 100per cent IRR in 3 years, driven by early stage investments in winners like Slice, M2P and Blue Tokai. It has already returned 27per cent of its capital back to investors.