Jack Ma to launch $250 million India-focussed fund

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Jack Ma, the founder of Alibaba group, has launched a $250 million India-focussed fund in partnership with a Chinese venture capital fund Ganesh Ventures. The fund has made its first close of $30 million backed by Ma’s eWTP Ecosystem Fund and Hong Kong-based Landmark Capital, the Economic Times reported. 

Ganesh Ventures aims to invest in early stage and growth stage startups over the next 3-5 years. The companies will be in sectors like media, technology, consumer products, financial technology and health technology sectors. It will set up offices in Gurgaon, Bengaluru, Hong Kong and Beijing and intends to finalise half a dozen deals this year.

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Ganesh Ventures has already made its first investment in India in fin-tech firm IndiaLends, originally a portfolio company under the Cyber Carrier fund.

The anchor investor in Ganesh Ventures, eWTP (Electronic World Trade Platform) was launched in May as a $600 million cross-border fund to drive strategic investments to help companies accelerate their international expansions and to support technology innovations, reports the Economic Times. It is backed by Chinese ecommerce giant Alibaba Group and its subsidiary Ant Financial, and helmed by Yu Yongfu, former chairman of Alibaba’s Digital Entertainment Group.

The Alibaba Group’s investment in India includes digital payments platform Paytm and online grocery BigBasket.

Chinese venture capitalists, across board, have already invested $30 million across four deals in India compared to $34 million over nine deals in 2017, according to data by Venture Intelligence Data.

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