Digital marketer-turned-entrepreneur Atul Hegde and industrialist Sudhir Menon have joined hands to launch an early stage startup fund called Rainmaker Ventures with a capital commitment of $50 million.
While Sudhir Menon is chairman and managing director at Mumbai-based chemical manufacturer Dorf Ketal Chemicals India Pvt Ltd, Atul Hegde is a veteran in the digital media industry and is currently the chief executive at Ignitee Digital Services Pvt Ltd, an advertising and marketing agency.
The fund, which will have a presence in India, the US, Brazil and Singapore, seeks to provide seed capital to 10 to 12 early-stage technology-focused startups in its first year of operations. The fund will also be offering hands-on mentoring to these startups.
"We feel that early-stage startups need full-time mentoring as much as they need capital. I have seen most startup businesses fail to move on to the next stage due to a lack of real-life business experience," Hegde said in a statement.
Rainmaker Ventures is looking at startups across sectors like healthcare, education, travel & fintech and FMCG.
"Today, capital seems to be chasing anything that is in the garb of a tech startup. This scenario will get a reality check soon. In the end, it is real business that counts, both to startup founders and investors. Rainmaker Ventures will focus on helping budding entrepreneurs to build a strong business on the ground. We believe that is the only way to ride and survive this startup wave," Sudhir Menon, co-founder of Rainmaker Ventures, said.
The fund is looking to make an average investment of under $1 million. It is also in talks with a couple of startups and is likely to announce its first investment in two months, according to a report by The Economic Times.
Earlier this month, Chinese mobile internet firm APUS Group floated a fund in India with an initial corpus of Rs 300 crore (about $45 million) to invest in startups. The APUS Fund will focus on startups in the mobile internet space.