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Tiger Global back on the prowl in Indian start-up arena

December 06, 2018 19:39 IST

The investor has now put together a fund of $3.75 billion to back private companies.

After over two-year long hiatus from investing in Indian startups, global venture capital firm Tiger Global Management is once again stepping up the pace of its investment in the country.

After backing Checkmate, a restaurant ordering streamliner platform last month, the New York-based firm has now led a $6.4 million investment round in Chennai-based facilities management start-up Facilio.


Considered to be one among the most prolific startup investors in the country, Tiger Global’s renewed investments come after it realised handsome returns from its investments in e-commerce marketplace Flipkart and ride hailing company Ola.

According to reports, the investor has now put together a fund of $3.75 billion to back private companies.

Accel, which co-invested with Tiger Global in backing companies such as Flipkart, Freshworks and ChargeBee also participated in the Series A funding round of Facilio.

The Chennai-based startup which offers real-time facilities management to commercial real estate owners in May 2017 had raised $1 million in seed capital from Accel.

“Bringing data-driven efficiencies to building operations and enabling a superior occupant experience is the future of commercial real estate, and Facilio is well positioned to lead this transformation,” said Lee Fixel, partner at Tiger Global.

“On a global basis, facilities management services and energy spend by buildings each account for more than a trillion dollars. I am optimistic that Facilio can be a true disruptor in this industry.”

On an average, if a building cost is $10 million, about $1.2-1.5 million is spent to operate the building every year.

Since facilities management is labour-intensive, there are a lot of inefficiencies in the system, said Facilio co-founder Prabhu Ramachandran.

Facilio runs on an IoT-based platform which can talk to lifts, security cameras, fire safety equipment, air conditioners and get live data feed from all the buildings of the client on a single platform in real time.

“We are providing clients with a centralised management which gives them economy of scale and customers also get a chance to learn what are the shortcomings in their buildings and improve upon them,” explained Ramachandran, who added that using Facilio, the operational expenses of buildings go down by around 10 per cent.

The current investment will be used by Facilio to strengthen its R&D portfolio and expansion in West Asia and US.

It would also be entering Europe in the next 5-6 months.

The company currently has a client base of 12 companies with 40 others in the pipeline.

“Facilio will continue to make significant strides in transforming the Facilities Management industry, to emerge as leading new gen technology vendors in this space,” said Shekhar Kirani, managing partner at Accel.

Tiger Global which started investing in India has so far backed over 15 companies though its current portfolio in the country is e-commerce heavy.

Its other portfolio in the internet and e-commerce space in India include Shopclues, Grofers, Quikr and PolicyBazaar.

Freshworks (earlier FreshDesk), a software as a service company which has now joined the elite Unicorn club with a valuation of around $1.5 billion, is one of the earliest bets of Tiger Global India where it first invested in 2012.

Photograph: Dado Ruvic/Reuters

Samreen Ahmad in Bangaluru