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Sequoia top backer of Indian unicorns with 8 bets, China's Tencent 11th with 3 investments

Sequoia top backer of Indian unicorns with 8 bets, China's Tencent 11th with 3 investments

Sequoia top backer of Indian unicorns with 8 bets, China's Tencent 11th with 3 investments
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By Shruti Malhotra  Aug 26, 2020 9:21:44 PM IST (Updated)

Even as concerns get raised about the Chinese play in Indian startups, the report said that only one investor from the country's northern neighbour Tencent Holdings features among the top unicorn backers.

Venture capital firm Sequoia Capital India is the top investor in Indian unicorns according to a new report by the Hurun Research Institute. The Indian arm of American investment firm Sequoia Capital India is currently backing eight Indian unicorns including Byju's, OYO, Zomato, Unacademy, and SaaS players Druva and Freshworks among others. Japan’s technology conglomerate Softbank and UK based Steadview Capital has seven investments each in India as per Hurun India Top Unicorn Investors List 2020.

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Hurun Report India MD and Chief Researcher Anas Rahman Junaid commented: “These investors play a significant role in accelerating the creation of new wealth in India. The success of these investors goes on to show that Indian HNIs should actively start allocating part of their portfolio towards start-ups.”

Interestingly, the report features only one unicorn investor from China- Tencent Holdings.  Tencent has so far invested in three Indian unicorns, shares the podium with a mix of Indian and global investors like Chiratae Ventures, IFC, General Atlantic, Bessemer India Capital and Accel among others. Fantasy gaming platform Dream11, the 2020 title sponsor of Indian Premier League is part of Tencent’s India portfolio along with edtech decacorn Byju’s and food delivery platform Swiggy.
China’s e-commerce giant Alibaba Group with stakes in India’s top unicorn Paytm, PaytmMall, food delivery company Zomato and grocery delivery company Bigbasket has used its Singapore investment arm and hence does not feature in the list of unicorn investors from China.
The Hurun India Top Unicorn Investors List 2020 ranks investors using regulatory filings. It is a compilation of all the investment firms that have invested into three or more Indian unicorns (companies valued over $1 billion), as of August 20.

While the majority of the top unicorn investors in India are US based companies, homegrown investment firms like Ratan Tata’s RNT Associates and Chiratae Ventures own a sizeable chunk in Indian unicorn startups.  With investments in Ola Cabs, Zomato, Lenskart and Unacademy, RNT Associates ranks seventh on the Hurun List of unicorn investors.

The Hurun India Top Unicorn Investors List 2020 follows the launch of Hurun India Unicorn List 2020 earlier in August. According to Hurun Research Institute, this list is its “very first attempt in showcasing the success stories of investors who have endorsed their trust in unicorns from India”.
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