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The Equalizing Factor The next 3-5 years will remain a very exciting time to be a founder given the funding landscape, access to technology but what will be a challenge for founders is recruiting & retaining good talent and living up to valuation expectations: Prantik Mazumdar

By Punita Sabharwal

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Prantik Mazumdar

Prantik has been involved with the startup ecosystem in different facets over the last 16 years of his career.
In the first 3 years, he helped Singapore based tech startups internationalize and scale up in developed markets as a civil servant; thereafter he led the business development and sales efforts of two brand & marketing services startups across Singapore & India, following which he co-founded Happy Marketer, one of the leading & most awarded digital transformation consulting firms across APAC, which was eventually acquired by Dentsu International in 2019. Prantik made all the investments into his own start-up until the recent acquisition following which he has been actively investing into late stage, pre-IPO opportunities in India and the US and advising early-stage start-ups across South-East Asia and India. As an investor, he prefers to look at early stage opportunities in emerging markets and has an inclination towards B2B or B2B2C companies because of his experience and his background in the B2B domain. He has invested in early-stage companies across FinTech, InsureTech, HealthTech, LogTech and B2B enterprise software and he has had three successful exits so far.

Apart from the product-market fit, Prantik tries and qualifies opportunities on few other parameters like if there is clear articulation of the problem that the founders are trying to solve for, addressable market of the problem that the founders are trying to solve for, the founders' knowledge, grasp and passion for the problem at hand and if the founder is the right fit for the particular domain, something that he calls "founder-problem fit", the quality of the company's revenue in terms of repeat business as well as good net promoter scores, terms of the commercial opportunity to ascertain the value of the deal. Prantik has participated in 30 early-stage investments, 10 latestage investments and 3 venture capitals. Talking about early-stage opportunities in emerging markets, Prantik is quite bullish about investment opportunities in India, Singapore, Bangladesh,
Indonesia, Vietnam and the Philippines in the Fintech, EdTech, HealthTech and InsureTech sectors. He predicts that the markets will witness Tier 1 VCs going early in the game. He believes that the VCs will invest even at seed stages if they are able to find valuable opportunities. "The next 3-5 years will remain a very
exciting time to be a founder given the funding landscape, access to technology but what will be a challenge for founders is recruiting & retaining good talent and living up to valuation expectations.", says Prantik. He hopes and expects to see more indigenous solutions that solve real world problems and not just create localized version of Western solutions in the coming years.

Prantik focuses on few other areas to add to the portfolio of the companies he has invested in. He advises the founders on the company's growth strategy in terms of product roadmap as well as the go-to-market approach. He connects the founders to other relevant angel investors, syndicates and VCs in order to help them to raise capital. He also advises the founders and the company as a whole on how to build a culture where the talent that is being hired by the company can thrive. He also helps them establish practices and ways of working that are sustainable and encourage diversity and inclusion to ensure that the business has it's heart in the right place, beyond just financial growth. He also connects suitable talents to the company that could help move the needle. Not only that, Prantik is also helping shape the company's data-driven marketing approach to ensure that the Lifetime Value: Customer Acquisition ratio remains healthy.


FACTSHEET
PORTFOLIO SIZE: 40
AVERAGE TICKET SIZE: $100K
TOTAL NO. OF EXITS: 3

Punita Sabharwal

Entrepreneur Staff

Managing Editor, Entrepreneur India

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