With 2021 shaping to be one of the most profitable years for the Indian start-up ecosystem, firms have shared in the profits, as no less than 14 start-ups have evolved into unicorns this year so far, and millions have been raised through fundraisers.
On Tuesday, early-stage investor WEH Ventures announced that it was launching the second fund of a targeted corpus of ₹100 crores to continue supporting start-ups which are focused on resolving various issues in India. The sector–agnostic Fund II is the successor of WEH Ventures’ maiden early-stage fund of ₹20 crores ($6.18 million) in 2017. The fund was used to make investments in start-ups such as Smallcase, Pratilipi, Trell and Animall, which are included in WEH Ventures’ portfolio.
According to WEH Ventures, more than half of its targeted corpus has been raised so far from the CEOs and CXOs major Indian corporations and family offices, among others. The proceeds from the fundraiser would be used to invest in 18-20 start-ups at an early stage and back them in multiple follow-on rounds using a substantial reserve, WEH Ventures said in a statement on Tuesday.
“WEH Ventures has been the first institutional investor in a majority of startups it has funded so far and it aims to maintain this approach. Investments are underway from the second fund in Unbox Robotics, a warehouse automation startup that uses plug and play swarm robotics to improve package sorting productivity. Other investments from Fund II include a DTC brand, a community-first app for Bharat and a gaming studio,” the statement read.
Deepak Gupta, Founding Partner and Rohit Krishna, General Partner at WEH Ventures said in a joint statement that their investors had reiterated their faith in the company after the remarkable success of the maiden fund in 2017, and they hoped to continue to deliver compelling returns for them over a long period of time.
In its maiden fund, around 90% of its portfolio companies had raised follow-on capital from institutional investors, thus exceeding the amount of capital invested by more than 100 times. WEH Ventures said that it had a multiple on invested capital of 4.2 times, with the average investment period at about 2.5 years old.