Murthy 'may sell more shares' to fund Catamaran

N R Narayana MurthyN R Narayana Murthy, the chairman and chief mentor of the country's second largest software exporter Infosys Technologies Ltd may sell more shares in the firm to invest in Catamaran Investments Pvt Ltd, the venture capital fund he has set up to support early-stage companies in India.

''I'm willing to raise more money through the same route at an appropriate time,'' Murthy told reporters in a conference call from the US on Friday morning. Catamaran Investments will begin operations in a few months out of Bangalore with a four-member team, he added.

Murthy raised Rs174.3 crore by selling 800,000 out of nearly 3.18 million shares he held in the Bangalore-based firm, Infosys said in a filing to the National Stock Exchange on Thursday. The fund will not focus on any one sector but invest in early-stage companies, a majority of it in India. (See: Narayana Murthy sells Rs172 crore Infosys stock to turn 'angel')

''In India, if you limit yourself to one sector, the number of opportunities is not high,'' the 63-year-old Infosys founder said.

''I am new to this field and don't have the competence to recognise venture capital opportunities,'' said Murthy. ''I'm willing to learn... I'm willing to be a pupil''.

Murthy added, ''I have always believed that entrepreneurship is an instrument of creating jobs, and is the best way to solve poverty of a country like India,'' Murthy said. He declined to elaborate about the size of investments he would make in shortlisted companies, but said finance will never be a limiting factor.