Kyron Global, a startup accelerator facilitator for large-cap companies, is now gearing up to launch a USD 50 million venture fund by 2018.
The fund will invest in startups that can solve a specific problem for a large company in retail and BFSI. The company is also looking at widening its reach onto other sectors such as healthcare and education.
“We have engaged closely with the startups and we have seen success in this model. A startup fund is a natural step forward for us. We want to create a corridor for large companies and startups to work together,” Kyron co-founder Lalit Ahuja told Moneycontrol News. The company is currently in talks with investors to raise funds for the cash pool.
At present, Kyron helps startups connect with big companies, providing CXO Services, Corporate connects, and access to a global network of investors. Kyron typically takes 6-10 percent equity in these startups, while the corporates pay a fixed fee. Till today, of the 100 startups under Kyron, a clutch of them have bagged contracts worth about USD 15 million.
The company has already exited four of the startups, and plans to exit at least 25 percent of its total portfolio by end of 2018.
The company started in 2012 as a startup accelerator but pivoted its business model in 2015. Kyron now helps big retailers and BFSI companies such as Target, Lowe’s, and Victoria’s Secret, establish their accelerator programs.
These are the companies that Kyron’s parent company ANSR helped set up their captive centres here. Kyron identifies operational problems and matches the startups with the right solution. These startups then go on to work for the 500 Fortune companies, creating real-time proof of concept. ANSR has helped set up 27 captive centres in India, relocating at least 40,000 jobs, to date.
“It was hard to find quality startups when we jumped into the accelerator program. We were looking for specific solutions for specific corporate problems. It made sense for us to work directly with the GICs and bring in startups to fill in the gaps,” Kyron co-founder Lalit Ahuja said. Kyron currently works with 7 companies, managing their accelerator programs in the country.
Kyron now plans to venture out of the ANSR clientele and hunt for potential corporate clients on its own. In next two years, Kyron will reduce its dependence on ANSR clients to about 30 percent, Ahuja reckons.
Elaborating on Kyron’s plans for the domestic market, Ahuja said that of the 500-odd GICs present in India, about 200 are ready for an engagement with startups. “By 2018-19, we will actively look at working with Indian corporate,” he added.