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Chandigarh Angel Network to invest in five tech startups by 2015-end

A pitch session in progress at CAN's office in Chandigarh

A pitch session in progress at CAN’s office in Chandigarh

The Chandigarh Angel Network (CAN), India’s newest network for early-stage investments, plans to put money in five technology startups by the end of 2015.

Incorporated in September, CAN aims to invest between Rs 10 lakh and Rs 2 crore in fledgling tech firms across sectors such as education, healthcare and finance, its founder member Kunal Nandwani told Techcircle.in.

“Our key motive is to build an ecosystem for startups in Chandigarh so that potential entrepreneurs do not have to move out to bigger cities,” said Nandwani, who is also the founder and CEO of fin-tech firm uTrade Solutions. “We want to help them with funding and mentoring.”

Nandwani said Chandigarh is home to top talent coming out of institutions such as the Indian School of Business in Mohali, the Indian Institute of Technology in Ropar, PEC University of Technology, and the University Institute of Engineering and Technology. Some city-based startups are already well-known, he added.

CAN also counts Sameer Guglani, founder of Morpheus; Samar Singla, founder and CEO of Jugnoo; Sameer Jain, CEO of Net Solutions; and Mohit Chitkara, vice president at Chitkara University, among others as members.

Like most angel networks, CAN would also provide investee firms with contacts and office space. It may soon put money in an e-commerce returns platform. The network will likely announce its first investment within a month.

At least one of CAN’s immediate investee firm will be a startup that solves a social need, Nandwani said.

A recent study had noted that India’s startup ecosystem is being propelled by a 123 per cent rise in the country’s active investor count. While the number of startup accelerators and incubators in India grew 40 per cent to 110 this year, the angel investor count grew 150 per cent to 292, the study found.

The Indian Angel Network (IAN) is one of the country’s largest angel networks. Founded in 2005, IAN incubates about 20 startups every year. IAN last put money in Mumbai-based Vonken Technologies Pvt Ltd, which runs logistics tech venture Quifers.

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