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Indian e-commerce boom draws Intel Capital

May 14, 2014 12:35 IST

The Intel Capital India Technology Fund, with a corpus of 250,000, was established in 2005-06 in India through which tech VC has invested a lot in data centre technology, telecom and infrastructure, apart from e-commerce.

Image: Raj Gollamudi, director, Intel Capital. Photograph: Courtesy, GITPROOn the sidelines of the Global Indian Technology Professionals Association World 2014 conference, Raj Gollamudi, director, Intel Capital, image, left, who was on the panel on trends and opportunities for budding entrepreneurs, told why he was bullish on Indian e-commerce.

Intel Capital, one of the largest technology venture capitalists in the world, invests anywhere from $300 to $500 million every year.

“One of the unique things about us is that we are globally focused. So last year almost half of our investments were outside the US, in Europe, Russia, Israel, India and Latin America Africa,” he said.

Talking about investment in India, he said a separate fund of $250,000, called the Intel Capital India Technology Fund, was established in 2005-06.

“When people think of Intel, they think of ‘chip,’ but if you think about what’s happening in the world, computer power is going into everything. Anything that has computing power is good for Intel. So, in India we have invested a lot in data centre technology, telecom, infrastructure and also in e-commerce, which is quite a big market,” said Gollamudi.

Intel Capital recently invested in Snapdeal (founded by Kunal Bahl, a Wharton graduate) in India, which is a marketplace for products. Gollamudi said, “The Indian market is not easy. It’s a tough market. It’s hard for foreign investors, so we focus on sectors where foreign investors are allowed.”

“Since the market is huge, despite various challenges, there are big opportunities for growth.” 

Intel Capital, he said, took “a bottom-up, inside-out view” in India and was able to absorb the rupee versus dollar fluctuations because Intel “takes a long-term view of 20 to 30 years when it comes to investment, and as such we can take risks that other companies are unable to.”

Ritu Jha in California