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Ankur Capital Announces First Close of its Second Fund at INR 240 crore Ankur Capital Fund II will be deployed in tech start-ups serving the next billion Indians

By Shreya Ganguly

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Ankur Capital

Increasing digitization in the country has seen a significant rise in launch of technology start-ups and venture capitalists (VCs) play a significant role in helping these start-ups scale up. Early-stage VC fund Ankur Capital which focuses on companies serving the next billion users—people across India who will get digital access for the first time—has announced the first close of its second fund, Ankur Capital Fund II (ACF II) at INR 240 crore.

The second fund saw participation from UK-based impact investor CDC Group Plc, existing LPs, The Dutch Good Growth Fund and SIDBI's Fund of Funds Startup and many other international and domestic institutional investors.

Plans For ACF II

According to an official statement, the second fund expects to reach its target close of INR 350 crore later this year.

"Ankur is looking to go deeper with its investments and will support companies from INR 3 crore to INR 35 crore," said Rema Subramanian, co-founder and managing partner of Ankur Capital.

ACF II was launched in early 2019 with an aim to focus on frontier technologies that unlock markets for the next billion. The fund will continue to invest in start-ups working across agritech, food, vernacular and health space and will also expand into sectors such as fintech and edtech. It expects to make 15-18 investments and will look to deploy in 6-8 companies in this coming year.

To achieve this goal, Krishnan Neelakantan, ex-head of CLSA India Research was also on-boarded as a partner.

Ankur Capital's Focus on Technology

Mumbai-headquartered Ankur Capital was founded in 2014 by Ritu Verma and Rema Subramanian. According to the VC firm, its first fund was invested across 14 companies covering sectors across agritech, food, healthcare and vernacular technologies. Some of the portfolio companies include Cropin, Niramai, Healthsutra, ERC and StringBio.

Earlier while speaking with Entrepreneur India, Verma had explained that Ankur Capital looks at two kinds of technology, software and innovation. While many focus on software technology, Ankur Capital is open to explore innovation technology as well.

She had also explained that Ankur believes that technology brings down the cost because of digitization. This allows the evolution of new business models because it brings down the cost of access to a customer which unlocks a whole set of different kinds of models.

What Can Start-ups Expect?

Verma had earlier said that entrepreneurs and the business model are the two most important factors considered at Ankur Capital before investment. Once a start-up is a part of Ankur's portfolio, they can expect all the support it needs including human resource issues, marketing and sales issues, getting strategic advisers on the table, and getting business development, among others.

"We are very involved investors and looking to help the company in any way we can," Verma said.

Shreya Ganguly

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