Ratan Tata makes New Year's second venture funding, invests in intelligence platform Tracxn

Ratan Tata, chairman emeritus of diversified conglomerate Tata Group, and now a serial investor, has invested an undisclosed amount in Bengaluru-based startup intelligence platform Tracxn, his second venture funding in 2016 and his 21st after he stepped down as chairman of Tata Sons.

Tata, who started the New Year with investment of an undisclosed amount in pet-care portal DogSpot.in, did not disclose the amount he invested in Tracxn as well.

Tracxn had earlier raised angel funding from investors, including the founders of Flipkart, Sachin Bansal and Binny Bansal, as well as $3.5 million in a Series-A round from SAIF Partners in April 2015.

Started in 2013 by Neha Singh (ex-Sequoia Capital) and Abhishek Goyal (ex-Accel Partners), Tracxn leverages intelligent data analytics and a sector-focused analyst team to help global venture capital funds, private equity firms, corporate development and strategy teams track the dynamic startup market and identify interesting investable companies and upcoming sectors.

Tracxn tracks over 100 sectors, including enterprise infrastructure, enterprise applications, technology, consumer, mobile, digital marketing, health, education.

The firm also runs an angel invest fund, Tracxn Labs, and an angel investment group called Tracxn Syndicate, which co-invests with the former. This competes with Let's Venture, another fundraising platform backed by Tata.

Tracxn's clients include venture capital funds, private equity firms and corporate development teams who use it to spot investment, merger and strategic partnership opportunities in different sectors.

Tracxn has increased the number of analysts exclusively tracking startups from 25 to 125 in less than 12 months.

The company said its client base has also seen a 400-per cent increase to over 300 customers across 20 countries in the same period. Tracxn's clients include Andreessen Horowitz, Sequoia, SoftBank, Google Capital, VMWare, GE and LG.

"Ratan Tata is a trusted household name and his way of building things has played a critical role in how our thoughts shaped up in early days of our lives," said Goyal. "As we rapidly expand across geographies, his unconventional ways of building large companies with high diversity will be very useful."

With this investment, Ratan Tata has invested in 21 startups and tech companies since 2014. These include Snapdeal, Ola Cabs, Paytm, Urbanladder, Xiaomi with UrbanClap and DogSpot among the recent bets.

Tata is also working with venture capital firms like Kalaari Capital, IDG Ventures India and Jungle Ventures as an advisor.

The Indian startup ecosystem has seen a lot of activity in 2015, with investors pumping in $9 billion into startups. The union budget too had earmarked Rs10,000 crore for startups last year.

The government is all set to launch its 'Start-up India' campaign on 16 January.