We Founder Circle (WFC), a Mumbai-based early-stage startup investment platform, on Thursday said it has launched a Rs 400-crore ‘Invstt Trust’ fund, to boost early-stage startup funding in India. The target size of the fund will be an amount of up to Rs 200 crore with a green shoe option of up to Rs 200 crore.
“WFC has also launched the We Founder Circle Global Angels Fund in GIFT City. We Founder Circle Global Angels Fund is a cross-border fund targeting investors from across the globe. The fund size is $30M with a green shoe option of $30M and a term of 7 years with an option to extend by an additional 2 years. We Founder Circle Global Angels Fund is also a sector-agnostic fund that will enable world investors to participate in opportunities all over the globe," We Founder Circle said in a statement.
It added that while the fund is sector-agnostic, it will predominantly look to invest in portfolio entities across various sectors such as financial services, deep tech, financial technology, EV, content gaming, industrial tech, retail tech, Edtech, supply chain, agritech, consumer/D2C, manufacturing, and others (logistics, healthcare, technology, agri-allied sectors, etc.)
There are 84,102 recognised startups in India spreading across 56 sectors, including agriculture, biotechnology and chemicals. Startup India was launched by the government on January 16, 2016.
Gaurav V K Singhvi, managing partner- investment manager (We Founder Circle Angel Accelerator LLP) of both the Fund, “The year 2021 saw 42 startups turning into unicorns and furnishing handsome results for their early-stage investors. This has lured many HNIs to turn to angel investments; however, the trend is still pretty nascent and requires streamlining alongside the right guidance for founders and investors. Therefore, we have envisaged this fund to catalyze the process from both sides - angel investors and early-stage startups."
He added that two-three years ago, it was about mentoring and incubating startups. Now the requirement has arisen wherein it is also about strengthening the flow of capital, streamlining it for HNIs to encourage the plus results, and bridging the gap between angel investors and startups. “Besides capital access, fund also provides networking and mentorship support to startups with tech expertise and global business connections."
The company said though it might be fluctuating for late-stage inflows, for early-stage startups the average deal size has not been impacted much, which highlights the rising interest of potential angel investors in startup investments as asset-class financial instruments. In line with the same, Funds will be investing in startups raising Pre-Seed, Seed and Series A rounds.
Neeraj Tyagi, co-founder and CEO of We Founder Circle, said, “This Funds are a natural extension of our endeavor to include more startups & investors into the mainstream of the ecosystem. We have been building both sides of the community & this fund will enable the growing number of angel investors to invest in a regulatory & compliance-based framework. We expect to bring in more than 1,000 angel investors to invest in 200 startups in the next 24 months."
Established in October 2020, the company said that in the past 23 months, We Founder Circle has invested in over 70 startups at their early stage and mentored them through various initiatives. Funds will help founders set for the next round of growth. “The launch of Funds is in line with WFC’s ambition to empower 500 startups in 5 years."
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