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Angel investors network Venture Catalysts to expand operations in tier-II cities

LiveMint logoLiveMint 22-06-2017 Yuvraj Malik

New Delhi: Venture Catalysts, an angel network headquartered in Mumbai, will open offices in Lucknow, Kolkata and Nagpur next month as it looks to expand its presence in tier-II cities.

The network has operations in five cities including Delhi, Mumbai and Raipur, and recently expanded to Bengaluru and Surat. It claims to have about 2,200 angels.

In an interview, co-founder and president Apoorv Ranjan Sharma said his firm plans to dive deeper into tier-II and tier-III cities and draw entrepreneurs who belong to family-owned business but have so far stayed away from start-up investing to its fold.

“There is published data that India has 1 million millionaires. But they are not doing angel investments because the ecosystem has not fully developed yet,” Sharma said. “These are not your typical angel investors but are mostly second and third generation entrepreneurs with solid business acumen. In the last year, we have added at least 100 of those,” he added.

Gaurav Singhvi from Surat-based The Financial Supermarket and Vikash Agrawal, a director at Raipur-based Nandan Steel and Power Ltd are prominent angels in their areas and part of Venture Catalysts network. Other notable angels include Dheeraj Jain, a partner at Redcliffe Capital; Anupam Mittal, from Mumbai-based People Group; and FreeCharge founder Kunal Shah.

As an angel network, Venture Catalysts allows potential investors to discover start-ups. These start-ups pitch their ideas to angels in different cities and secure funding. On occasions, members of the Venture Catalysts core team invest in their personal capacity alongside other angels.

Last year, Venture Catalysts raised $500,000 from Zaffiro Ventures to fund its expansion drive.

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