While the likes of SoftBank have already made announcements, other Japanese giants are now rapidly making their moves in India.
Greenhouse Ventures (GHV) has announced that Masataka Matsumoto - Partner at World Innovation Labs (a Tokyo and Silicon Valley based VC and a partner of GHV Accelerator) will be visiting India this week.
While US investors have been active in the Indian start-up scene for long, it is now the turn of Japanese investors to commit significant monies and management focus to get up to speed on the India opportunity.
GHV, an Accelerator ‘with a difference,’ was adopted very early by World Innovation Labs (WiL).Masataka is the ex- President of Yahoo Japan. He also assumed the role of senior executive of Yahoo! Shopping. He was involved in Softbank’s acquisition of Vodaphone, served as the first director of mobile business development at Yahoo, and headed Softbank’s mobile products and consumer unit.
Typically, WiL invests dollar 5 to 30 million in multi-stage startups with global appeal and disruptive potential. They also provide operational expertise and strategic partnerships to accelerate their portfolio companies' global expansion. Some of the LP’s to WiL are IncJ, Sony, Nissan, Mizuho and Benesse, among others.
“GHV Accelerator’s partnership with WiL and other Japanese investors allows us to ensure that our portfolio companies get access to committed Series A funding. Our strategy of tying up Series A capital is based on the observation that many portfolio companies of most accelerators and incubators fail to get follow-on capital required for them to scale up. The WiL partnership and connect with Japanese giants will also help our portfolio companies with their global expansion, especially in the US and Japan, the world’s 2nd largest developed economy,” said, Vikram Upadhyaya, founder and Chief Evangelist, GHV Accelerator.
Some of Vikram’s portfolio companies like Druva and Stayzilla, have been in the news recently for raising over 25 mn USD and 20 mn USD respectively.
GHV’s partners from Japan are invited to join the Pitch Day of GHV Accelerator, beginning in the week starting from 23rd February and will continue till 9th March. GHV would be organizing 3 pitch days across this time period, which would be attended by Vikram Upadhyaya, GHV mentors and the Japanese partners.
“Over the past few years, I have been in talks with several large investors and companies from Japan, and advising their boards on their India strategy. As the markets and the above-mentioned indicators emerged clearer, I noticed their 'intent’ change to ‘action’. While the likes of SoftBank have already made announcements, other Japanese giants are now rapidly making their moves in India,” added Upadhyaya.