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Blume Ventures to invest in over 15 startups this year


Blume Ventures has released its quarterly investor letter which states that it invested in 8 additional Series A fundings, 3 Series B fundings, 1 Series C funding and managed 1 part-secondary exit, 4 full exits and 1 grand exit, by January 2015. The report is inclusive of the investments made in calendar year 2014.

Companies funded through its series A include GreyOrange, Covacsis, WeAreHolidays, Instamojo, Hashcube, Purplle, Nowfloats and Tookitaki, while those funded through series B include Zopper, Taxiforsure and Hotelogix. Taxiforsure was also the beneficiary of Blume’s series C round of funding.

On the M&A and exit front, Blume exited seven companies. Qubecell was acquired by Boku while Zipdial was acquired by Twitter, both positive exits. On the other hand five startups were exited at a value lower than the original investment. These include Adepto, Gharpay/Clink, Skoolshop, Karmic and Moneysights, each of which was acquired for its assets.

What Blume intends to do:

According to Blume, it is currently on the verge of completing 4 years of funding. It is expecting most of the startups it invested in in 2011-2013 to breakout this year. The venture also aims to invest in an additional 10-12 series A and 4-5 series B fundings from February this year. It also expects to see 3-4 positive exit outcomes or company sales this year. As of now, Blume Ventures has invested in overall 14 Series A fundings, 5 Series B fundings and seen 2 positive exit outcomes till date.

What Blume Ventures learned in 2014 includes:

– Even if the bank accounts of a startup are depleted, the 2-3 years of effort mean that founders gain experience and good teams sometimes come together, which can lead to better products in the future. Additionally, the venture mentions that it is better to absorb such startups in bigger organizations rather than just walk away.

– A lot of capital is coming into India, but the capital is arguably ahead of the curve in terms of valuations and capital required. This, according to Blume, in some parts, has the characteristics of a ‘bubble’.

– Blume Ventures also mentions that there is a rapid movement for everything to be mobile-first or mobile only. According to the firm, there will be 200-300 million first time internet users added through mobile devices this year, and not many will be primarily English-speaking. This will lead to a blend of local languages and English on the internet, which the firm calls the ‘Vinglish Internet’.

–  The company adds that it is bullish about small business themes in India where usage will be dominant on mobile devices, although it prefers ideas that can be exported overseas. The firm adds that despite these factors, ‘world-class’ innovations is being overlooked.

– Blume Ventures Advisors have launched a $50-60 million fund for overseas markets. Currently, the company is in the process of setting up a domestic structure as well.

Image Source: Blume Ventures

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