Early-stage venture fund pi Ventures, which invests in artificial intelligence and deeptech startups, has announced the final close of its second fund with a total commitment of ₹702 crore, closing well above its base target of ₹565 crore.
The fund is backed by multiple institutional players such as BII, Nippon India Digital Innovation AIF (NIDIA), Accel, Colruyt, Premji Invest and entrepreneurs and family offices such as Binny Bansal, Varun Alagh, Samit Shetty, Rajesh Ranavat, Anupam Mittal, Hemendra Kothari, Hitesh Oberoi, Ullas Kamath, Deep Kalra and other senior leaders from IBM, Facebook and Google among others.
SIDBI is a key investor in pi ventures’ second fund with a commitment of Rs 100 crore from the Fund of Funds for Startups managed by SIDBI. This is nearly 2.5 times what it invested in the first fund.
The venture capital firm primarily invests in AI and deeptech startups in India. Founded in 2016 by Manish Singhal, it closed its first fund in 2018 with a corpus of ₹225 crore.
“We are very bullish on deeptech. India is a great place to build deeptech companies. We are privileged to have a role to play in the journey to put India on the deeptech map of the world,” said Manish Singhal, founding partner, pi Ventures.
Funding has been difficult for deeptech startups as technology may only be understood by some, which is why investors shy away from deeptech startups he added.
pi Ventures will continue to focus on early-stage (seed/ pre-Series A/Series A) investments via this fund. The second fund of pi Ventures has already invested in seven startups and plans to take this number to 20-25 in the next two-three years.
From the first fund, pi Ventures has backed 15 deeptech startups, including Niramai, Pixis, Wysa, Agnikul, Locus and others.