Early-stage startup investor Venture Catalysts has plans to invest USD 108 million (around Rs 824 crore) in about 300 startups in 2022. Founded by Apoorva Ranjan Sharma, Anil Jain, Anuj Golecha and Gaurav Jain in 2016, the Venture Catalysts group closed as many as 207 deals in 2021, and invested in 178 unique startups.
"In 2022, we aim to invest USD 108 million and are targeting 300 unique start-ups," Apoorva Ranjan Sharma, Co-Founder and President, Venture Catalysts Group said in a statement. Sharma noted that "we will continue investing in sectors such as FinTech, EduTech, AgriTech, FMCG, e-commerce, logistics and supply chain management, we expect D2C and DeepTech to dominate in 2022 and many of these startups to emerge from small towns.
" The sector-agnostic group co-invests with marquee VCs like Sequoia Surge, DSG Consumer Partners, Nexus Venture Partners, Lightspeed Ventures, Matrix Partners, and other early stage and angel investors like Astarc Ventures, Earlsfield Capital, Anicut Capital, Titan Capital etc. The group's total portfolio includes 15 per cent startups that come from small towns like Silvassa-based peanut butter brand MyFitness, Panaji-based Numadic, Lucknow-based IGP.com and Keeros and Bhopal-based Agrigator amongst others.
"The pandemic has created many gaps in service deliveries which are being addressed by startups. We envisage a huge blue-ocean opportunity in backing such businesses in its early stages of growth. Considering the stage of investing, the valuations help us realise lucrative exits, thereby contributing to our business growth by many folds," Sharma said.
The group claims to be in the list of top 10 global most active accelerators and incubators, second time consecutively and surpassed popular accelerators such as Techstars, Bpifrance, 500 Global, and SOSV and now only behind YCombinator.
Some of the investments of Venture Catalysts for the year include BluSmart, Dukaan, Klub, Melorra, Kala Gato, Mitron TV, Rage Coffee, Power Gummies, Coutloot, Prescinto, Resolve AI, Toch, Zingbus, RoundLabs, and Stage, amongst others.
"Venture Catalysts witnessed 62 cumulative exits and liquidity events in 2021, unimpacted by the ongoing socio-economic crisis of the pandemic. The most successful exit for the year remains BharatPe with 80 times returns as well as other significant exits such as Dukaan, ImpactGuru and Rooter," the statement said.