Venture capital investment firm Saama capital — more popularly known for its early investments into Snapdeal, Paytm — has raised around $31 million in its third venture capital fund. The VC firm is looking to close this third fund with raising around $60-$80 million.
Ash Lilani, managing partner at Saama Capital says the firm is looking to invest between $2 million to $5 million in each company in Series A round and reserved around 100 percent to 150 percent for follow-on rounds. It is also looking to co-invest in early-stage ventures. It is expected to make final close by the third quarter of this year, said person familiar of this development. Ash Lilani, further said,
With this fund our focus so far has been on software as a service (SaaS) companies and food companies focused on supply chain. We are also watching the financial technology space in the business-to-consumer segment.
Saama Capital is kind of a unique entity in the Indian venture capital market. It is a small fund but has stakes in some of the biggest startups of India. It has invested in companies such as Paytm, Snapdeal, which are currently tagged as unicorns.
Till now, the firm has invested in more than 25 companies, which includes Mobilia, Chai Point, iYogi, Lending Kart, Naaptop, SKS Microfinance, AppLabs, etc.
From its third fund, Saama has already invested in six companies. The startups in which the firm invested includes LendingKart, Eazydiner, Veeba Foods, Jifflenow, Raw Pressery and an undisclosed company.
The VC firm had previously raised $54 million for its first fund and $26 million for the second fund. Last year, the firm exited Snapdeal and sold its stakes in TutorVista, Sula Vineyards, App Labs and Prizm Payment Services.
Overall, it had invested about $4 million in Snapdeal. Before the e-commerce company’s OTPP deal, Snapdeal’s valuation had skyrocketed 140% to a reported $4.8 billion. The firm grabbed the opportunity and sold its stake in the company, which was profitable enough to return its second fund to its investors.
Interestingly, the new fund comes at a time when investments in Indian startups have slowed down. However, investors remain bullish on the long-term prospects of Indian startups, and thus, several VC firms have raised nearly $2.6 billion in new funds since 2015.
Earlier this month, we reported that IDG Ventures India has received commitments of $150 million from investors for its third fund, and is targeting $200 million. Sequoia Capital recently closed its $920-million fund.
Accel India is also planning to raise a new fund that will be larger than its previous $305-million corpus. A couple of months ago, VC fund for clean energy sector Infuse Ventures announced that it has raised $150 million under new fund – ‘Bharat’.