Unitus raises funds for India from global foundations

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

BANGALORE: Seed-stage impact investor Unitus Seed Fund has raised $7 million in fresh funding from a clutch of institutional and individual investors taking the total fund size to $20 million.

The India-focused micro VC fund has secured funding from several major US-based foundations including Deshpande Foundation, Michael & Susan Dell Foundation, Lemelson Foundation, Sorenson Impact Foundation and Wadhwani Foundation. New individual investors include Amazon executive Diego Piacentini, Microsoft executives Soma Somasegar, Bharat Shah, Anoop Gupta and Nagesh Pabbisetty, Social Venture Partners leaders Todd Vogel and Lance Fors, financial services executive Geeta Iyer, McKinsey executive Dilip Wagle, Concur CEO Steve Singh and others.

“We plan to invest in up to 40 startups over the next two years that impacts the lives of low-income population. There is a dearth of seed capital in this segment of the market, making the investment opportunities very attractive. We invest anywhere between Rs 50 lakh and Rs 1 crore in startups and pick up a significant minority stake,” Srikrishna Ramamoorthy, partner in Unitus Seed Fund, said. Ramamoorthy said the fund is looking to raise an additional $5 million from India-based investors in the next few months.

Source: Times of India (link opens in a new window)

Base of the Pyramid, impact investing