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How a Japanese has emerged the hero of angel investments in India

Hirokazu Mashita

Hirokazu Mashita

The Indian consumer internet boom caught the attention of Hirokazu Mashita—friends call him Hiro—when he came to Bangalore for a conference on mobile internet in September 2014. He spent the next six months to study the startup ecosystem in the country and network among Indian venture investors and founders.

His fledgling two-year-old Singapore-based venture capital firm M&S Partners Pte Ltd made its first investment in March this year. In the next six months, Mashita invested in 18 Indian mobile internet startups. He has just committed to invest in two and may end this year with 25 early stage investments in the country.

Mashita, former head of venture capital arm of Japanese corporation Hikari Tsushin Inc, has emerged an active early stage investor in India. His portfolio companies in the country include NDTV’s Gadgets 360° and Fifth Gear Auto, online peer-to-peer lending market place Faircent, Rajesh Sawhney’s InnerchefSilver Push and hyperlocal on-demand delivery startup LazyLad.

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