Silicon Valley-headquartered Sequoia Capital has raised $2 billion in growth and venture funds to invest in Indian start-ups at a time when people thought the country is in the midst of a ‘funding winter’ or forecast that raising capital would be difficult. Over and above that, it also has a dedicated $850 million fund for deployment in Southeast Asia, it wrote in a blog. Interestingly, this is the firm’s first dedicated fund for the SEA region. The venture capital (VC) firm added that it would use these funds to back start-ups across stages — from seed to IPO.
Locally, the firm has investments in unicorns like Unacademy, Meesho, Mobikwik, among others. While some of its companies like Zomato and Indigo Paints have managed to list on the stock exchanges, too. It had earlier said several of its companies were readying for an initial public offering (IPO). It has, however had its fair share of tussles, too. Its portfolio companies like payments provider BharatPe and Singapore-based Zilingo fired their respective co-founders following a rift with the management. “This fundraise, which comes at a time when markets are starting to cool after a very long bull run, signals our deep commitment to the region and the faith our limited partners (LPs) have in the long-term growth story of India and Southeast Asia. The new funds will bolster our mission to help daring founders to build legendary companies from idea to IPO and beyond,” the company’s blog post added.
Further, it intends to “double down” on its efforts to help “daring founders” build healthy companies that will endure.
“We are at an exciting juncture in India and Southeast Asia, with ever-deepening markets, higher consumption power, supportive regulations and high talent density. We have never seen such diversity and dynamism in the founders we partner with; we are awed by their vision and ambition. There’s a strong sense in the emerging economies and fast-changing societies across India and Southeast Asia that ‘now is our time’. Many large companies with regional or global footprints will emerge from this region in the decade to come,” it said.
The recent announcement is more than double of the $1.3 billion funds it raised for the two regions back in July 2020, when the start-up ecosystem witnessed a host of deals materialise.
The year 2022 marks the VC’s 50th anniversary of operations as a global company. It completes 16 years of operations in India and has been present in the SEA belt for 10 years.