Finance News

Hedge funds make a comeback in India; put money into 25 start-ups this 12 months



Hedge funds, which led the start-up funding growth in 2015, are making a comeback, after taking a pause for a couple of years. And, it’s not simply Tiger International, which has invested in 15 start-ups this 12 months. Many different hedge funds, corresponding to Falcon Edge Capital, Steadview Capital, Hillhouse Capital and Altimeter Capital, have resumed investing in India.

Steadview Capital has already invested $200 million in India this 12 months, investing in start-ups corresponding to Unacademy, Ninjakart, and Dream11. Falcon Edge Capital has backed start-ups corresponding to Stanza Residing, WickedRide, Mswipe, Locus and Credit score Vidya, serving to these firms elevate round $220 million with different traders.

US-based hedge funds Hillhouse Capital and Altimeter Capital are main a $500-million fundraising by Udaan, an internet market for small companies. Altimeter Capital has backed firms corresponding to Practo and Pine Labs, whereas Hillhouse Capital has invested in Swiggy, Automotive Dekho and PaperBoat.

What’s bringing them again?

“Other than the truth that we now have grow to be an even bigger and higher tech ecosystem, this time the investments are throughout each B2B in addition to B2C areas as towards a lion’s share of investments going into e-commerce enterprise final time round. That’s a giant optimistic,’’ says Ashish Fafadia, accomplice, Blume Ventures, an early-stage enterprise capital agency.

Some B2B firms, corresponding to Locus, are attempting to resolve giant market issues with high-quality engineering-led IP performs, which is encouraging hedge funds to put money into them.

“I consider the most important contributor is the arrogance within the Indian economic system basically, and the truth that the Indian shopper web market has actually opened up in previous few years,” says the founding father of a number one start-up. These are giant traders who minimize giant cheques. With out having important confidence on the way forward for the web economic system in India and with restricted visibility out there, it was tough for them to take such bets up to now, he says.

Hedge funds have invested in 25 start-ups in 2019 until July-end, serving to these start-ups elevate $400 million (cumulative worth of the funding rounds, together with different traders), in response to information from Tracxn. That is near the 26 offers ($800 mn) closed by hedge funds in 2014 and 49 offers ($700 mn) in 2015, on the peak of the funding growth. A majority of those offers had been minimize by Tiger International, which backed 18 start-ups in 2014 and 35 in 2015.

Deal volumes this 12 months is sort of thrice of the low ranges seen in 2016 and 2017, when hedge funds simply did 9 offers in annually. The exercise picked up in 2018, which noticed 18 offers by hedge funds. All start-up traders, not simply hedge funds, began slowing down in 2016 and 2017 as there was a sense that valuations had run forward of fundamentals.

‘‘They made a bunch of investments, took a pause to see how these form up. Issues had been a bit sluggish and the truth that unit economics of huge variety of firms was nonetheless being questioned at the moment,’’ provides one other investor, who didn’t want to be quoted. Historically, hedge funds invested in unlisted firms with a view to get fast exits by IPOs. With extra liquidity, firms are staying personal longer and traders are creating wealth by promoting to strategic traders or by secondary offers/gross sales.

Financial uncertainty as a result of demonetisation, GST and different liquidity points additionally would have performed a job. “Bigger gamers will all the time look to time the market and never essentially might be open to take very lengthy exposures. That’s advantageous, because it takes all forms of gamers to make the market,’’ provides an investor.

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