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2014-11-25

Infosys co-founders launch Axilor Ventures to support entrepreneurship, innovation

Axilor will focus on scalable, disruptive and technology-led business ideas from budding entrepreneurs.

Axilor Ventures is a business incubator set up to improve the odds of success of entrepreneurs and early stage companies. Axilor aims at energising the start-up ecosystem in the country by incubating ventures operating in the e-commerce, healthcare, life sciences, sustainability and clean technology space. Axilor will focus on scalable, disruptive and technology-led business ideas from budding entrepreneurs and experienced professionals with entrepreneurial aspirations.

In its initial launch stage, Axilor will run three programs – Accelerator, Entrepreneur-in-Residence and Early Stage Funding Program. Besides helping entrepreneurs and early stage companies with funding, Axilor will assist them in other areas critical for success. These include infrastructure, mentorship, market access and talent. Through its programs, Axilor aims to build a platform for innovation and entrepreneurship that will benefit entrepreneurs. Axilor, through its partnerships, will also help entrepreneurs connect with innovation ecosystems outside India.

For the selected start-ups, the founders will co-invest through their individual funds. The quantum of investment will range from Rs 30 lakhs ($50,000) in the accelerator program up to Rs 6 crore ($1 million) for early stage companies.

Axilor Ventures’ founding team includes S.D. Shibulal, S. Gopalakrishnan, Srinath Batni, Prof. Tarun Khanna and Ganapathy Venugopal. S. Gopalakrishnan and S.D. Shibulal are co-founders of Infosys. Prof. Tarun Khanna is the Jorge Paulo Lemann Professor at the Harvard Business School and Director of the South Asia Institute at Harvard University. Srinath Batni retired recently from Infosys where he was a member of the Board. Ganapathy Venugopal, formerly head of Strategy & Planning at Infosys, has been appointed the Chief Executive Officer at Axilor and will spearhead the venture.

The infrastructure to house the programs is coming up in J.P. Nagar in South Bangalore. The first batch of the accelerator program is scheduled to commence in the first quarter of 2015. The applications for the programs will be opened later this month.

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