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Nandan Nilekani, Helion's Aggarwal launch $100-million start-up fund

BT Online     July 4, 2017

Infosys co-founder Nandan Nilekani and Helion's senior managing director Sanjeev Aggarwal have launched a $100-million fund for budding entrepreneurs.

The fund will be used to back entrepreneurs who plan to turn their enterprises into next-gen, billion-dollar companies. The duo will back entrepreneurs who will build institutions through a platform they call 'The Fundamentum Partnership', reported The Times of India.

The platform will focus on consumer internet and software-as-a-service (SAAS) companies and make investment from $10 million to $25 million in these companies.

Aggarwal who has backed firms such as e-grocer BigBasket said their role comes in when the product's market fit is established and first set of consumers start coming back to the company.

Prior to Helion, Aggarwal was the founder and CEO of Daksh that was acquired by IBM in 2004. The fund which has an initial corpus of $100 million has reached the halfway mark with $33 million pumped by the two founders and rest by others. The corpus can be extended to $200 million with the balance $100 million expected from institutional investors.

Nilekani and Aggarwal will not charge management fee to the fund. The platform will focus on businesses in sectors such as logistics and infrastructure and those with a long-term view, said Nilekani.

The process will involve the task of picking three firms annually from a shortlist of 100 firms. Nilekani and Aggarwal will finalise the top three firms to receive financial support from a list of 20 firms prepared by IITians and entrepreneurs Ashish Kumar and Prateek Garg.


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