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Rainmaker Ventures to invest more, handhold portfolio firms

Atul Hegde, Co-founder, Rainmaker Ventures

Atul Hegde, Co-founder, Rainmaker Ventures

Mumbai based early stage investment firm Rainmaker Ventures started its operations nine months ago and has since then invested in two start-ups. The technology-focused, $50 million corpus fund, expects to close at least two more deals by December.

So far, Rainmaker Ventures has invested in YAAP Digital, a super specialty digital content company and bus aggregator Limo. Though Rainmaker Ventures is a relatively new investment firm in the Indian start-up ecosystem, it is helping its portfolio companies in identifying target for inorganic growth – a strategy that’s typically not associated with early stage funds.

YAAP Digital recently acquired Brand Planet Consultants, a strategic branding and design company, which was founded in 2008, for $3 million in an all-cash deal. The $3 million that YAAP invested in the acquisition came from the $5 million that Rainmakers invested in the start-up in July 2016.

“We are aggressively looking for couple of more acquisitions for YAAP to bolster their discovery and distribution service line,” Atul Hegde, co-founder, Rainmaker Ventures said in an interaction with Techcircle.in.

“An acquisition brings senior talent. For a young company, it is very easy to get senior talent on board (through acquisitions) rather than organically build it. So, in YAAP’s case these multiple factors made us to go for acquisition,” Hegde added.

Brand Planet is currently engaged with marquee clientele including the likes of The Coca Cola Company, Mrs Bector’s Foods, Mahindra Comviva, Godfrey Phillips India, SBI Cards, Hero Cycles, PI Industries and LT Foods, among others.

Hegde says Rainmaker Ventures will help in identifying and funding acquisitions for its portfolio companies on a case to case basis. “There is no hard and fast rule. We take every company on a case to case basis. For YAAP, this was the perfect fit. The acquisition strategy differs from company to company,” he said.

Digital marketer-turned-entrepreneur Hegde had joined hands with industrialist Sudhir Menon last year to launch Rainmaker Ventures.

Hegde says Rainmaker will announce a couple of deals by the end of 2016. “Our investment strategy remains the same; we are looking to invest in companies in the pre-growth stage. I think we should be able to announce 1-2 deals by the end 2016,” Hegde added.

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