Antler strengthens global platform with India expansion

Antler, a Singapore-headquartered venture capital and private equity investment firm, has announced that it plans to launch its platform in India.

The local operation will start in Bangalore and be led by Rajiv Srivatsa, the Co-Founder of Urban Ladder, who joins Antler as a Partner.

Antler currently has a global presence in 11 locations around the world, and reportedly has nvested in over 160 technology-companies, making it one of the world’s largest early-stage investment platforms, according to a press release by the firm.

Antler says that it is democratising entrepreneurship and works with exceptional founders regardless of background or geography, with the firm making a point of the fact that over 40% of Antler’s portfolio has at least one female Co-Founder, and their founders represent over 60 nationalities.

Antler plans to invest in up to 40 companies within its first year of operations in India through an India-dedicated fund. The firm also has plans to expand to other major cities in India in the next three to five years.

Magnus Grimeland, Founder and CEO, Antler, said: “We believe the Indian entrepreneurial ecosystem has massive potential. The quantity of exceptional talent, the ambition level of founders and the proliferation of high-quality venture capital and angel investors provides an incredible opportunity to build successful early-stage companies from scratch.  We want to lower the barriers for exceptional people to start a technology company, regardless of their background or geography. Over the next 5 years, India is expected to be the third largest market and grow into a USD5 trillion economy, fuelling a much higher growth for the digital economy. In addition, we want to provide India originating start-ups with Antler’s global platform to ensure start-ups from India can expand, scale, succeed and tap into expertise on a global level.”

Rajiv Srivatsa, Partner, India, Antler, said: “I am excited to launch Antler in India. Antler, with its stellar mix of venture capitalists, entrepreneurs, and operators, has built a tremendous technology-backed platform to launch global-ready companies, all in the span of just two years. Today, India is at the stage where China was a decade ago. In the coming years, we have the potential to take this ecosystem into the next orbit and build 100s of world-class start-ups at scale.”

“We will launch an India fund and collaborate with the entire ecosystem including VCs, angels and work closely with corporate partners and functional specialists as mentors, to power the India opportunity ahead this decade,” Srivatsa continued.

The inaugural India program will kick off in Bangalore in the second half of 2020.  The Antler program runs over a six-month period in two phases. The first phase is about building the right team with co-founders who have complementary skills.

During this period, the Antler team pulls on resources and expertise from across the world to enable founders to validate their business ideas and build strong teams. All founders receive a monthly stipend in the first phase of the program. After the first phase of ten weeks, Antler invests in the strongest teams, who go on to the second phase to build and scale the start-up.