5 Key Angel Investors In India
India has grown into a hub for startups in various sectors. As the third largest startup ecosystem in the world, India now has more tech driven startups than Israel and China. Angel investors have been a boon to the startup society providing them with early equity investments. While starting a new business, angel investors help with the initial boost required to hone their product and launch the startup.
We’ve compiled a list of top investors in India who have helped several startups develop and grow.
1. Krishnan Ganesh
He is a serial entrepreneur and the cofounder and chairman of Portea Medical. Over the years he has invested in startups like Must See India, SilverPush, HackerEarth, Oximity, Overcart, Browntape, delyver.com and Onlineprasad.com. He was also the CEO of the online tutoring website TutorVista which addresses global students through remote teachers.
2. Meena Ganesh
India’s foremost business leaders, Meena Ganesh was selected by Fortune India as one of the 50 ‘Most Powerful Women in Business.’ She is the MD and CEO of Portea Medical and helped cofound one of India’s pioneering BPO company, Customer Asset. Meena also served on the jury for the inaugural Economic Times Startup Awards in 2015. Her current venture GrowthStory helps in founding and raising funds for startups through institutional venture capitalists.
3. Ranjan Anandan
He is an MIT and Stanford educated entrepreneur residing in Bengaluru. Ranjan has cofounded Blue Ocean Ventures in Sri Lanka and has emerged as one of the most active angel investors in India. He has invested in more than 80 startups such as Druva, Insta Mojo, TravelKhana, Quench, Miss Malini, Popxo.com and Burrp. He is currently Google India’s Managing Director and was previously part of Microsoft India.
4. Ravi Gururaj
He is the chairman and cofounder of Frictionless Ventures and chairs the product council of NASSCOM. Ravi is also a leading member on several angel platforms and is currently focusing on driving the 1000 Startups program backed by NASSCOM and Google. Ravi Gururaj has invested in various startups like AppVirality Inc, Wegilant (Appvigil), Hiree, Tookitaki, Explara, and Socialblood Inc.
5. Anupam Mittal
Boston College graduate Anupam Mittal is the founder and CEO of People Group and the ex chairman of Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI.) The People Group owns established business entities like shaadi.com, makaan.com, Mauj Mobile and People Pictures. Mittal’s key interest areas are SaaS, consumer internet, mobile and marketplaces and he likes to back businesses that have huge market potential.
If you feel we’ve missed out on key angel investors, let us know in the comments section below. You can also write to us at [email protected]
Daily Basket Creates BBisabully Over Being Sued By Big Basket Over Usage Of Basket
Big Basket is India’s first online shopping platform which revolutionised the way people bought groceries. It is easy to spot Big Basket’s vehicles and delivery agents all dressed in bright green colours. The ability to order quality vegetables and groceries and have them delivered at the doorstep was one of the main reasons why it shot to fame. Since then online grocery shopping has become commonplace with the arrival of Dunzo, Amazon, Flipkart and many other small scale businesses.
Big Basket found itself in a bit of news which it would have liked to avoid. News about a small two man bootstrapped startup named Daily Basket being sent a cease and desist order by Big Basket began doing the rounds on social media platforms. The whole issue began when Big Basket said Daily Basket was copying their app, user interface and their name. Big Basket claimed they came across a filing named Daily Basket when checking the trademark registry and felt it was a combination of the registered trademarks bigbasket and bbdaily.
The bootstrapped startup Daily Basket has no means to mount a legal battle against the six year old unicorn Big Basket. So, Ramesh Vel, one of the founders of Daily Basket, began a website named BBisabully to call out Big Basket’ bullying. The website gives a brief overview of Daily Basket which says they are an online grocery delivery platform based only in Coimbatore. The Big Basket notice contains the following points according to Daily Basket:
- Stop using the domain name dailybasket.com.
- Discontinue the mobile apps.
- Stop all the operations immediately.
- Transfer our domain name dailybasket.com (Which is premium btw, and costs a little fortune) to them immediately with free of cost.
- Pay their legal team of 2 lakh rupees to cover the legal notice.
- Do not use a similar domain containing “basket” as a prominent feature ever again.
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The website BBisabully also lists out reasons and visual evidence as to why Daily Basket is completely different from Big Basket and how the former is not copying the latter. There are many brands in the market which have the word ‘basket’ in their names like Milk Basket and Nature’s Basket by Godrej. If going by the logic of Big Basket that Daily Basket copied their name, then Nature’s Basket predates Big Basket by six years meaning Nature’s Basket could unleash the same claims on Big Basket.
Carl Pei’s Nothing Invites Retail Investors
Carl Pei said the time came for him to leave OnePlus and focus on other interests, following which he resigned from OnePlus in October 2020. Since then, Pei had been working on his new startup in the audio hardware sector. Carl Pei unveiled the name of his startup which is now called as Nothing, on January 27th, 2021. Since the unveiling of Nothing, Pei’s startup has attracted a lot of attention from Silicon Valley and venture capitalists.
Carl Pei now seems to be emulating his success formula at OnePlus with his new startup Nothing. OnePlus is highly customer centric, because as a company they take in inputs from their consumers and adapt them to their products. Pei seems to be using the same strategy with Nothing, as he invited retail investors to invest in his new startup. Normally a startup raises Series A funding to begin product development and then goes on to Series B and so on. For a normal retail investor to invest in a stock, they could only do it at the time of an Initial Public Offering (IPO) at the time of which the company would be valued highly. However, Carl Pei is letting in investors from the beginning.
Usually the community has to wait for an IPO to invest, but by that time, the valuation is already high. We are inviting you to own Nothing from the very beginning, at the same price as our Series A, and be on board for the entire ride.🚀 https://t.co/mnQtoiJwOV
— Carl Pei (@getpeid) February 16, 2021
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This lets the investors be a part of the product development process and makes Nothing more personalised. Moreover the investors would also act as promoters for the products. Currently, there are $ 1.5 million worth of shares available. Users can invest a minimum of € 50 and a maximum of € 20,000. However, the demand to invest is off the charts and was unexpected as Carl Pei confirmed there was an interest worth of $ 10 million from 8,700 users.
WOW we have just reached $10m USD of registered interest in just 7 hours from over 8,700 people! So grateful for the amazing community behind @nothing ! 🥰🥰
— Carl Pei (@getpeid) February 16, 2021
Nothing’s first wireless earphones will be unveiled in the summer of 2021. Nothing aims to build an ecosystem of listening devices which talk to each other. Initial investors of Nothing include the likes of Tony Fadell (Principal at Future Shape and the Inventor of the iPod,) Casey Neistat (YouTuber,) Kevin Lin (Co founder of Twitch,) Steve Huffman (CEO of Reddit,) Liam Casey (Founder and CEO, PCH,) Paddy Cosgrave (Founder of Web Summit,) Kunal Shah (CEO of CRED) and Josh Buckley (CEO of Product Hunt.) Alphabet’s investment arm Google Ventures was the latest investor in Nothing as they invested $ 15 million.
Startup India Seed Fund To Be Disbursed From April 1st
There is no doubt India has a strong foothold in the startup ecosystem. India currently ranks third in the world for the number of startups, next only to the United States of America and China. This was possible due to the Indian Government’s initiatives to develop the startup ecosystem and also due to a strong presence of unicorn startups like PayTM, Zomato, Unacademy and many more.
The Government of India announced it would begin to disburse INR 945 crores seed capital from April 1st, 2021 under the Startup India Seed Fund Scheme in a bid to boost the startup ecosystem in India. These funds would be distributed through select incubator partners all over the country. This scheme will be implemented by the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT.)
In a gazette notification, DPIIT announced that Startup India Seed Fund Scheme will provide financial assistance to startups that have been recognised by the DPIIT and incorporated not more than two years ago at the time of application.
The Guidelines for Startup India Seed Fund have been notified by @DIPPGOI We are on course to implement the scheme wef 1 April ‘21. Please see the details here: https://t.co/pUvXaEwbj2
— Anil Agrawal (@anilarch) January 29, 2021
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The Startup India Seed Fund Scheme will have a common central application on the Startup India portal for startups on an ongoing basis. An Experts Advisory Committee (EAC) will be formulated to oversee and monitor the overall execution of the scheme. The EAC will evaluate and select the incubators for allotment of the seed funds and place measures for the efficient disbursement of funds.
The government also mentioned preference will be given to startups working in the areas of agriculture, education, food processing, healthcare, social impact, waste management, water management, financial inclusion, biotechnology, energy, mobility, defence, space, railways, textiles and oil and gas.
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