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Social/Impact Venture Firms invest US$95mn over 53 deals in 2015

  • India Infoline News Service |
  • 03 Feb, 2016 |
  • 12:25 PM
Social/ Impact Venture Firms invested about US$95mn over 53 deals in India during the twelve months ended December 2015, according to data from Venture Intelligence, India’s longest serving research service focused on private company financials, transactions and valuations.. Deal activity increased 8.2% compared to 2014 (which had witnessed 49 such investments valued at US$106mn). 
 

The larger sized investments during 2015 included the US$15mn investment in Swarna Pragati Housing Microfinance (by investors including Zephyr Peacock, Omidyar Network, Aavishkaar Goodwell and Intellecap Impact Investment Network) and the LGT Venture Philanthropy led US$8mn investment in dental clinic chain myDentist.
 
Top Investments
Top Social VC Investments in 2015
Company Sector Investors Amount (USUS$M)
Swarna Pragati Housing Microfinance NBFC (Housing Loans)  Zephyr Peacock, Aavishkaar Goodwell, Omidyar Network, Intellecap Impact Investment Network (I3N) 15
myDentist Dental Clinics LGT Venture Philanthropy, Seedfund, Asian Healthcare Fund 8
Indifi Enterprise Software (B2B - Credit Evaluation - SMEs)  Elevar Equity, Accel India, Others 5
Connect India Distribution (Rural - Assisted E-Commerce)  Aavishkaar 5
Shotang E-Commerce
(Marketplace - B2B)
 Unitus Impact, Exfinity Fund 5
 
Investments by Industry
 
 
With 14 investments worth about US$25mn, the Information Technology and IT-Enabled Services (IT & ITES) industry emerged as the favorite industry for investments among Social Venture Capital investors too during 2015 accounting for 26% of the investment activity (27% by value). The larger investments in IT & ITES companies included the US$5mn from Unitus Impact and Exifinity Fund raised by Shotang, a B2B E-Commerce marketplace which raised and a similar amount invested in SME funding platform Indifi by Elevar Equity along with Accel India and angel investors. Other IT & ITES investments by Impact Investors during 20-15 included regional languages focused tech firm Reverie Language Technologies (Aspada and Qualcomm Ventures), m-commerce firm Lookup (Khosla Impact and others) and credit scoring firm CreditMantri (Elevar Equity, Accion International and IDG Ventures India).
 
Education was the second favorite industry among Social VCs during 2015 attracting 11 investments worth US$8mn (against 10 deals in 2014). Vocational focused companies attracted the most interest.  Significant sized investments included Karadi Path Education that provides training in English that raised US$2.3mn from Aavishkaar and Pearson Affordable Learning Fund; iStar, a vocational training company raised US$1.5mn from Unitus Seed Fund and Dell Foundation and Avanti Learning, a test preparation firm, that attracted US$1.5mn from Dell Foundation and Pearson Affordable Learning Fund.
 
Healthcare & Life Sciences companies, topped by specialist clinics, attracted eight investments worth US$15mn in 2015. LGT Venture Philanthropy led an US$8mn investment in dental clinic chain myDentist, while Aspada committed an additional US$3.1mn to semi urban hospitals focused Be Well. Other sectors that attracted investor attention during the year included telemedicine (MeraDoctor) and Medical Devices (breast cancer focused UE Life Sciences and eye-care focused Nayam Innovations).
 
Impact Investments in the Banking, Financial Services & Insurance (BFSI) industry declined for the second year, attracting just four investments worth US$19mn in 2015 (compared to six investments in 2014). BFSI investments were led by the US$15mn investment in Swarna Pragati Housing Microfinance (by investors including Zephyr Peacock, Omidyar Network, Aavishkaar Goodwell and Intellecap Impact Investment Network). 
 
Investments by Region 

 
Companies in the Southern region saw 28 investments worth US$41mn (i.e. 54% of the volume and 41% by value) compared to 22 deals worth US$30mn in 2014. Western region recorded 11 investments worth US$22mn in 2015 compared to nine investments worth US$11mn in 2014.
 

 
Among cities, companies headquartered in Bangalore retained its spot as the favorite among Social VC investors during 2015 attracting 16 investments worth US$23mn, followed by Mumbai based companies that accounted for nine investments worth US$19mn and Delhi-based companies with 8 investments worth US$27mn.
Most Active Social VC Firms
Investor  2015 Investments 2014 Investments
Unitus Seed Fund 9 5
Rianta Capital 8 2
Aspada Investments 4 4
Acumen Fund 4 2
Aavishkaar 4 4
 
Investments by Fund Type
 
India-dedicated VC funds in 2015 accounted for 16 deals worth US$35mn compared to foreign funds which invested US$17mn across 25 deals. The average investment size of India-dedicated funds was also larger at US$2mn compared to US$0.7mn of foreign funds.

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