Singapore’s GIC makes a strong comeback in the desi startup market

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Chennai: GIC of Singapore, India’s premier corporate funders, is making a comeback in the Indian startup space, writing checks at a rapid pace, indicating its renewed interest in Indian history.
For 20 months between January 2019 and October 2020, Singapore’s sovereign investor lay dormant without any new or consecutive investment.
However, since October of last year, when he signed a check for $ 100 million for Razor Pay, he has been galloping forward. And in the last 90 days, five investments, three of which are new and the next two have been made.
Investors in the Indian space are globally three categories namely, opportunistic, PE and strategic. GIC was taking on the role of a strategic investor in the Indian space, but has now changed course and is also looking into the PE investment space.
“GIC suddenly became active in the investment business. Previously their bets were more strategic (for example: investing in Bharti Airtel was to help SingTel to partner with Bharti), but now they are making financial investments like a private equity investor ”, said Arun Natarajan, CEO of Venture. Intelligence, a company that tracks VC / PE activity. Indian PE veteran Temasek, too, has focused more on Indian investments.
For example, over the past three years, Temasek has supported 17 companies, six of which were signed in the past 90 days and where four were new and two were following.
“Normally, the investment roles seemed defined between Temasek and GIC, with no overlapping roles on the investments, not anymore,” Natarajan said.

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