Venture Capital to invest in Indian rural technology

by Dave

Business Standard

Venture capitals (VC) in India, which traditionally invested in urban segments or technology sector, have begun investing in rural-centric technology firms. Avishkaar India Micro Venture Capital Fund, Acumen Fund, and Rural Innovations Network (RIN) are showing increased focus on rural markets.

“India has very few funds that look at investing in rural India. But what’s heartening to see is that the sector now has a few options and entrepreneurs can approach for investment,” said Arun Natarajan, MD and CEO, Venture Intelligence.

Most of these VCs get their funding from philanthrophic activities. RIN gets funding from donors such as HIVOS, The Lemelson Foundation, Sir Dorabji Tata Trust, and The Rockefeller foundation. Whereas Google, Gates, Cisco and others form the investor base for the Acumen Fund.

Acumen India has been in the country since 2005 and has invested in 12 entrepreneurs. The focus is to fund innovative businesses that target the poor as consumers and demonstrate to the world the sustainable ways of bringing access to critical goods and services such as healthcare, water, housing and energy to low-income households.

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