Unicorn India Ventures (UIV), a Mumbai-based early-stage fund, has announced the first close of its Rs 1,000 crore third fund at Rs 225 crore. Its final close is expected by March 2024.
With Fund III, UIV aims to build a portfolio of 25 startups that are focused on global SaaS and digital platforms, areas of expertise for Unicorn India. It will focus on investments in emerging sectors like climate tech, agritech, spacetech, and the semiconductor ecosystem.
The average cheque size for its investments will be $1-2 million, after which the fund will invest in follow-on rounds. As part of their investment thesis, UIV claims to invest only 20 per cent of its investible corpus to create the portfolio, and the rest to back the winners of the portfolio.
“We continue to identify innovative business models with faster scalability. The metric for us is a clear path to profitability for the companies,” said Bhaskar Majumdar, managing partner, Unicorn India Ventures. “Our focus is to invest in companies that are enablers of India’s digitisation across sectors. We avoid high cash burn businesses like D2C, Consumer Internet, content businesses,” he added.
Unicorn India Ventures has also announced senior hiring for Fund III. These include veteran fund managers Bikram Mahajan and Kamlesh Ahuja.
Mahajan has joined the team as a partner and “will play a key role in the next phase of the fund’s growth, with a primary emphasis on portfolio management and nurturing the growth of investee companies.”
Ahuja, on the other hand, has joined as VP (Fund Operations), responsible for all compliance and back-office administration for all the funds.
“While we have invested in startups from Delhi, Mumbai, and Bangalore, over 60 per cent of our portfolio is built from startups coming from emerging regional hubs like Kochi, Jaipur, Ahmedabad, Pune, and Hyderabad, among others. Our key differentiator is that we are present across India and believe that India’s startup landscape has changed immensely over the past couple of years,” said Anil Joshi, managing partner, Unicorn India Ventures.
Started in 2016 by Bhaskar Majumdar and Anil Joshi, Unicorn India Ventures is a technology-focused early-stage venture fund that invests in startups in emerging sectors. Its previous Fund II, a Rs 300 crore fund launched in 2020, had a portfolio of 20 companies. With the two funds under management, UIV has an active portfolio of over 35 companies.