All You Need to Know about Google's Rajan Anandan Who Has Quit to Steer Sequoia's Surge
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“8 amazing years. 850 million internet users across India and SEA. Many billions of revenue and the fastest growing region in the world. The incredible team that thinks big and executes superbly. Thank you @GoogleIndia #GoogleSEA. Loved every minute,” were the words of exit of Rajan Anandan, the VP of Google India and South East Asia. Rajan’s operation has been a proven boon to the company. Rajan through two consecutive tweets has pronounced today both his exit and his joining the venture capital firm Sequoia.
Following the announcement of stepping down from Google, he tweeted about his upcoming venture, “Digital economy in India+SEA: $125B in 2018. 30%++ yoy growth (revenues, not users). $500B addressable market by 2023. There simply has not been a better time to #startup in India and SEA! Super excited and honoured to be joining the @Sequoia_India family!” Sequoia is equally excited about Rajan coming on board.
Rajan who will be associated with Google till the end of the month is also an Angel Investor. He is already popular in the investor community for his work as an angel investor. He indulges in a couple of fields and has earned extensive experience in them. Let’s have a look at the business leader and his run so far.
A Peek into Rajan’s Career
A graduate in Mechanical Engineering from MIT and Post-Graduation in Manufacturing Systems Engineering from Stanford University, Rajan started his career as a Partner in McKinsey. Following this, he was associated with Dell from 2003 to 2008. He started with Dell, as Vice President and EA to Chairman and in 2008, he stood down from the organization as its Vice President and Country General Manager to join Microsoft India. He came on board as its Managing Director and operated for two whole years. Finally, in 2011 he got associated with Google, whereas everyone knows he had spent eight years of his professional journey.
The Sparks of Interests
Apart from all these ventures throughout his career, his interest in the investment spectrum has always brought him to space every now and then. Pertaining to investments, the Angel Investor is also known to dip his fingers in varied fields.
B2B companies are focused and solve real problems and these characteristics are quite dear to Rajan as an investor. Of all the exits he has had, the best returns have been through B2B companies.
Online-based offline business
With consumer internet, Anandan is looking at companies that are internet-enabled offline businesses such as CroFarm, an Agri-tech start-up which he invested in early 2017.
CroFarm is an online-offline marketplace that operates on the basis of farm to retailer model. With its logistics solution and technology, the platform claims to reduce a good slice of the post-harvest losses.
The Google India head is extremely excited his portfolio company Zunum Aero, a Seattle-based start-up which is busy building the world’s first hybrid aircraft.
The company is backed by Boeing’s HorizonX fund and Jet Blue’s Technology Ventures. By 2020, Zulu will ship the world’s first hybrid aeroplane. The aircraft expected to cost close to $ 2 million will have the capacity to travel short distances with about 12 passengers.
Social entrepreneurship has always made a good impact across geographies and this space is quite dear to Anandan and he prefers investing in social startups as it is beneficial for the country.
An interesting choice of investment that Rajan indulged is the content space. He was one of the few early investors in content platforms, having invested in companies like Miss Malini, PopXo and LBB. But with time, he has slowed down pertaining to the amount of time that the segment consumes to monetize.
“There is no point in investing in twenty of these because the first five will take time to monetize. So, what I try to do is this – get in early, build positions, invest in some of the early companies and then make decent exits,” he shared.