Singapore-based investment and wealth management firm Lighthouse Canton, which launched in India in 2020, has announced the first close of its maiden venture debt fund at Rs 155.4 crore. A Category – II AIF, the fund looks to raise Rs 550 crore, with a greenshoe option of an additional Rs 550 crore. The LC Venture Debt fund will deploy this capital in 35-40 start-ups over the next two years.
This comes after Lighthouse Canton closed a Rs 300-crore fund — in partnership with Nueva Capital — in April 2022. The LC Nueva Fund, which was oversubscribed, invests in pre-series A and series A startups, with average cheque sizes ranging from $1-5 million.
Speaking about the growing acceptance of debt capital in India amidst a funding winter, Lighthouse Canton’s Global Head of Asset Management, Sanket Sinha, said, “In more mature venture ecosystems such as the US and Europe, venture debt has risen to 15-20 per cent of the total VC funding, whereas this proportion is less than 2 per cent in India.”
“Given the growth of the venture ecosystem in India, we see tremendous opportunity for venture debt, and we expect the size of this market to grow 3-4x in the next five years,” he added.
As of September 2022, Lighthouse Canton was overseeing more than $3 billion worth of assets under management (AUM) and advisory. Besides capital, the fund also serves pre- and post-monetization needs of founders, HNIs, family offices and other institutional investors. Some of its bets in India include EV financing platform Revfin, telemedicine startup Redcliffe, women’s footwear brand Monrow, used car leasing service Pumpumpum, and so on.
Ankit Agarwal, Director for Venture Debt, Lighthouse Canton, said, “Our presence in other markets uniquely positions us to partner with companies with international expansion plans and help them with their financing needs. Our investors and partners appreciate the value we bring to the ecosystem, and we are witnessing healthy demand for this asset class.”
Lighthouse Canton Pte Ltd is regulated by the Monetary Authority of Singapore, while LC Capital India Pte Ltd is registered with the Association of Mutual Funds in India (AMFI).
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