John Chambers Tells Us Why He Invested in Indian Startup Lucideus After investing last year in Uniphore Software Systems, this year Chambers made a $5 milion Series A investment in cyber security services firm Lucideus.
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When John Chambers bites from the Indian startup pie, the entrepreneurial community takes a notice. After investing last year in Uniphore Software Systems, this year Chambers made a $5 milion Series A investment in cyber security services firm Lucideus.
With the Series A investment, Chambers picked up 10 percent stake in the startup. Chambers, who created a focused fund to invest in startups called JC2 Ventures, compares India with France as once it was the worst place to do business and then how it became the best place to do business with startups. As chairman of the US-India Strategic Partnership Forum he has his eyes set for the new India with Digital India and Startup India making its mark. He says, "In India, business and government can work toward a common goal."
His vision is to help startups at early stage and help them scale. He says this is what he is doing in the next chapter of his life. "I am less of a venture capitalist, I call myself a coach, a mentor," shares Chambers. About what he looks for in a startup, Chambers says, "I look for technological direction of the company and see if there are any customers believing in their product. I look at industries set for disruption." "I will help these startups grow 30-40 percent a year," says Chambers.
There are 12 CEOs Chambers is coaching right now across Atlanta, Austin, Chicago, New York, Silicon Valley, France, Germany and India. As per Saket Modi, CEO, Lucideus, Chambers spends an hour every week over a call with him. "He asks me what problems you have and helps on that. John is available for his startups which is quite an assurance." From current two investments Chambers plans to make five investments in total in India.
(This article was first published in the December issue of Entrepreneur Magazine. To subscribe, click here)