Targets raising around $100 m via offshore fund
Exfinity, the private equity venture founded by former board members of Infosys, plans to launch its second fund in a month’s time with a target of raising around $100 million.
The new fund will be an offshore-based one, located in Mauritius and will look at investment opportunities in technology start-ups globally. It has already raised R125 crore in the first fund focused on start-up technology firms in India and invested in three companies.
The four key promoters of Exfinity are: TV Mohandas Pai and V Balakrishnan, former board members of Infosys, Girish Paranjpe, former CEO of Wipro’s IT business and Deepak Ghaisas, former CEO of I-flex Solutions.
Talking to FE, Balakrishnan said that the entire process is expected to be completed in the four months. He claimed that investor response has been very positive to their proposal. Unlike its earlier fund, which invested primarily in India, the second fund will look at opportunities globally, particularly the US. Balakrishnan said the second fund would give them the opportunity to participate in series A funding rounds, which would translate into larger investments in the start-ups.
The start-up ecosystem has gained momentum in the global technology hotspots, with India also being one of the key regions. Nasscom, the Indian IT industry’s trade body, in a recent study along with Zinnov, said the country is expected to be home to at least 11,500 technology start-ups by 2020, up from the present 3,000, driven by a demand for solutions around new age technologies. The study said Indian start-ups, with their unique solutions, are witnessing increased traction in global whitespace opportunities such as Internet of Things, augmented realty and smart hardware among others. According to the study, the emerging niche technology solutions are primarily focused on ad-tech, edu-tech, health-tech, agri-tech and many more. It was also revealed that Bangalore and the NCR region are home to the most number of young businesses.
Exfinity, in its first fund, had raised R125 crore in August, 2014. The fund had announced its first close of R100 crore in June 2014 and the green shoe option of R25 crore was open for subscription. Investors included CXOs, industrialists, family offices, professionals and UHNIs.
According to Balakrishnan, the start-up ecosystem has gathered further momentum with lot more professionals taking the entrepreneurial route though the only gap for them is the mentoring and support structure and Exfinity plans to fill in this void.