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Norwest Venture Partners to invest $250 mn in Indian mobile and media sectors

01-May-2006
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Norwest Venture Partners to invest $250 mn in Indian mobile and media sectors

Norwest Venture Partners, a venture capital firm, will be investing up to $250 million of its new $650 million fund in Indian companies, mostly in the mobile and media sectors, Promod Haque, the firm’s Managing Partner has said.

Haque said that NVP, which currently has over $2.5 billion invested in various companies in the US, India and Israel, was bullish about the prospects of media firms in India, especially those having a hybrid model.

“We will continue to make investments in Indian companies in Mumbai, Bangalore and Hyderabad, which have potential to create value in the enterprise software, wireless software solutions and telecommunications,” Haque said.

Demonstrating NVP’s optimism about Indian companies, the VC firm will be raising its investments through the new fund, Norwest Venture Partners X, LP. The fund is targeted at early, mid- and late-stage investments in India. “NVP invested about five per cent of its $400 million NVP IX Fund in Indian companies. The bulk of the investment went into companies in the US. With the new fund, we expect to invest $250 million into Indian technology companies,” Haque said.

Haque further said that Yatra Online, a travel services portal in which NVP had invested in, would be launching its services soon. In January this year, Yatra Online had secured initial funding from leading financial and strategic investors. Yatra’s investors include Reliance Capital, Norwest Venture Partners, and TV-18.

Asked whether there was potential for a travel services portal to grow in India, Haque replied that its prospects were good because the penetration of broadband had increased in the country. He said that NVP’s strategy of investing in hybrid companies, in which the bulk of the software and technology is created in India, while the sales and marketing team works in the US were paying dividends.

Norwest Venture Partners’ hybrid and direct investments in India include companies like AmberPoint (Service Oriented Architecture management software), Cast Iron Systems (Inventor of the Application Router for business integration), CollabNet (on-demand distributed software development solutions), GXS (business-to-business e-commerce solutions), LifeSize Communications (high definition video communications), and Open-Silicon (a fabless ASIC company providing a predictable, reliable and cost-effective alternative to traditional chip design).

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