• Manjunath Gowda

    M&A is critical for the Product Startup ecosystem in India

    Small $20-30m M&A transactions are the lifeblood of Silicon Valley. Over 400 such transactions happened last year. Israeli companies accounted for over 20% of these transactions. India had only a couple of transactions to speak of. This has to change of Indian has to become a Product Nation. 

    iSPIRT is focusing on this issue through its soon-to-be-announced M&A Connect Program. The M&A Connect Program team – led by Jay Pullur and Sanjay Shah – was in Silicon Valley last week for listening meetings with various stakeholders. As a part of this exercise they hosted a long brainstorming session with more than a dozen M&A heads of serial acquirers ranging from Facebook to Vmware.

    One other listening meeting was with about 20 Indian product entrepreneurs camped in the Valley. I was privileged to attend this meeting. It was a delightful 3.5 hours discussion. There were three set of issues that were discussed. One set of issues related to improving discovery of Indian startups. It turns out that addressing this is not as simple as doing a SV delegation or getting TechCrunch coverage. More than that is needed. The second set of issues related to the regulatory friction of doing small M&A deals in India. The third set of issues were about improving the readiness and preparedness of product entrepreneurs.

    There was active participation by all the attendees. These included:

    • Indus Kaitan,Bitzer Mobile
    • Suresh Sambandam,OrangeScape
    • Manjunath M Gowda, i7 Networks
    • Asif Ali, Reduce Data
    • Vamshi Mokshagund, Credii
    • Rohit Nadhani, Cloud Magic
    • Madhur Khandelwal, ShoppingWish –
    • Kumar Rangarajan & Satyam Kundula, LittleEye Labs
    • Deobrat Singh, Gazemetrix
    • Rajan Arora, SchoolAdmissions
    • Bharath Mundiapudi, Orzota
    • Annkur P Agarwal, PriceBaba
    • Srikanth N, Arktan
    • Jay Pullur and Vijay Sundaram, Pramati (they hosted the meeting) 


    I was most impressed by the dedication and passion of the iSPIRT team driving this effort. Their selfless commitment to making a difference was heartwarming. I could sense that most of us attendees felt the same way. The self-help community that iSPIRT is creating is truly inclusive and impactful. 

    If you are product startup interested in exploring a possible M&A exit in the future do watch for more details about the M&A Connect Program. Try and become part of this. Given what I heard in the meeting, I’m sure that this new Program be game changing for the ecosystem.  

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    • http://twitter.com/iWayInfosoft iWay infosoft

      very good initiative. Please send me more info on M&A Connect Program

    • narikannan

      Outstanding Initiative! Services companies may not be in a hurry to exit; they can survive and thrive from revenues from Day 1. Product companies eat up money the first few years and you absolutely need funding – from angels, VCs or your own savings. To attract capital you need an Exit strategy for the investors. Indian product companies do not have a good exit strategy in IPOs in India much less elsewhere not because we cannot do it but because we do have experience and a track record doing it! So Mergers and Acquisitions are the most viable option at this point in time! Only a track record and experience doing this will attract capital in the front end and build a product ecosystem!

    • Ranga – Athena

      I am Ranga, Chennai based serial entrepreneur. I would like to receive more updates on M & A connect program. Please connect me on ranga@athenainfo.net or @rangakidambee

    May, 31
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