Silicon Valley-based venture capital firm Accel Partners has announced that it has raised its sixth fund for India-focused investments. The amount raised in this tranche is $550 million. The VC targets early stage and seed capital funding for Indian startups and has a fairly long history of funding startups in the country. The amount it has raised this time is the largest. The last fund raised in 2016 was worth $450 million. Well known startups like Flipkart, BookMyShow and Myntra have been backed by Accel Partners in the past.
Accel Partners has outlined some of its views on the startup scenario in India in a statement. There is a plethora of business sectors the venture capital is eyeing. These include food delivery, digital payments, e-commerce, agritech, education, insurance, logistics, healthcare, real estate, and manufacturing. The company feels the application of digital technology in all these sectors have opened up the opportunity for startups to work on and deliver on their projects.
While some of the marquee investors are now turning towards early stage investments, Accel Partners has been following this as a policy from its very inception. Of the over 100 companies it has invested in, 85% would be those where Accel is the first institutional investor. It stays invested with the startups and makes follow up investments too.
The notable story for Accel Partners could be Flipkart which got acquired by Walmart on a valuation of a whopping $21 billion (Walmart picked up 77% stake for $16 billion). Accel Partners had made an investment of $800,000 in Flipkart when it was promoted by the Bansals.
Accel also counts Freshworks and Swiggy as its success stories in India. The software-as-a-service (SaaS) startup Freshworks was picked up by Accel Partners when the company had just six employees. The investment made was $1 million. This was way back in 2011. Freshworks today has 2,500 employees and competes with the best in the world in its space. Its valuation, $3.5 billion.
Swiggy received its funding of $1 million from Accel Partners when it was making just 100 deliveries a day confined to a small pocket in Bangalore. The online food order delivery company is today valued at $3.4 billion and makes $1 billion deliveries a day.
Acko, Blackbuck, Bounce, BrowserStack, Clevertap, Curefit, Mindtickle, Moglix, Ninjacart, Portea, Rupeek, Samunnati, StanzaLiving, UrbanClap and Zenoti are all Indian startups that Accel has made investments in. The VC has been active for the past 13 years, starting with first $10 million fund in 2006.
Accel Partners is not the only venture capital firm with the Indian startups as the primary focus to raise funds to arm themselves to the teeth. It should mean celebration time for the Indian startups.