Tiger Global Shows Deep Interest In India’s Tech Startups

Indian American flags
A man holds the flags of India and the U.S. while people take part in the 35th India Day Parade in New York August 16, 2015. (Photo: REUTERS/Eduardo Munoz/File Photo)

New York-based hedge fund Tiger Global Management has struck investment deals with some of India's tech startups in the software and fintech segments, people with knowledge of the negotiations revealed on Wednesday. Analysts said the move is a show of how the country's tech circle is on the right track.

According to Bloomberg, Tiger Global has been in talks with around a dozen Indian startups over the last few months. Almost half of the firms have sealed investments from the hedge fund.

Industry analysts noted that the attention on India is partly due to hedge funds trying to escape tariffs in the trade war between China and the U.S. In fact, even South Africa-based Naspers Ltd. is seeking to penetrate India's booming tech segments.

Furthermore, analysts believe India's more stable figures in terms of market maturity are giving investors a positive outlook of how the startups will fare amid global headwinds.

"There's confidence in the depth of the market," managing director at Kalaari Capital Advisors Pvt., Vani Kola, pointed out.

Tiger Global is particularly secretive in its funding deals but this time, the media picked up its movements. Industry experts and spectators are interested in how startups will make use of the investments from one of the world's most influential investors.

As of the first half of this year, Tiger Global helped fund 13 Indian startups in different segments such as company software and consumer internet services. Last year, the investor only funded eight Indian firms.

Looking back, the investor's interest in enterprise software services and related segments can reflect changes in management such as the Scott Shleifer, a master of profits in the e-commerce and tech ecosystem, took over Tiger's technology fund department.

The latest addition in Tiger Global's list of Indian startups is supply chain software firm Moglix. The investment was secured on Thursday under a $60 million fund as spearheaded by Tiger.

Moglix said it will use the investments for expansion plans. The startup is looking to add distribution centers in India so it can keep supporting the operations of its key manufacturing plants.

Shleifer, who is recognized for his work with JD.com, said Tiger Global has confidence in the ideas and work that Moglix does for the segment. Industry experts believe the partnership will help turn the world's attention to India's growing software segment.

India's tech sector as a whole is also expected to see a boost even if many investors are particularly interested in software and internet services. Other segments may also receive funding as more international investors explore opportunities in the country's tech ecosystem.

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