Tag Archives | impact investing
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Two bright lights in India’s Impact Investing Landscape

The two bright lights in India’s impact investing landscape are Harish Hande’s $10 million fund for sustainable energy enterprises and Khosla Impact. Sustainable Energy Fund Last month I finally got a chance to spend some time with Harish Hande at the SELCO office in JP Nagar, Bangalore. Our conversation ranged from ‘SELCO culture’ and non-English […]

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This Week in Impact Investing

Aavishkar and Cisco Cisco announced that it will invest in Aavishkaar’s Aavishkar II fund – a Mauritius based US$120 million fund. The funding will be part of Cisco’s commitment to invest about $200 million of venture capital investments in India, of which almost half has been utilized. Aavishkaar II’s focus will be on rural India, specifically agriculture, […]

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Dr. Harish Hande, Founder & Managing Director (Selco) - Pic courtesy selco-india.com

Selco’s Harish Hande raising $10 million to fund sustainable energy enterprises

Selco Solar’s Harish Hande was one of the standout acts at the recent Villgro conference on social enterprises. Without mincing any words, he declared that it was dangerous for investors to dictate what entrepreneurs should do. It was time, he said, for entrepreneurs to say “no” to certain types of investors. He was dead serious […]

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Color of money

A few weeks ago, I attended the two-day Unconvention 2011 – a social enterprise conference hosted by Villgro in Chennai. Nilima Achwal (Villgro Fellow) and I co-authored our conference report on the NextBillion blog – Villgro’s Unconvention 2011 – Key Takeaways. In social enterprise conferences, impact investing topics get a fair bit of air time and […]

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Calling bullshit on Forbes’ List of Top 30 Social Entrepreneurs

Normally I don’t pay much attention to Top [X] rankings. Maybe today was a slow news day. Maybe I just returned from Villgro’s Unconvention and am still chewing the cud so am hyper-sensitive on who is(isn’t) a social entrepreneur, what is(isn’t) a social enterprise. Scott Anderson’s article on NextBillion alerted me to this freshly released […]

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Members of GOI's National Innovation Council

India’s Largest Social Enterprise Creates India Inclusive Innovation Fund

(Lest you miss my tongue-in-cheek title, India’s Largest Social Enterprise = Indian Government) If you’ve been following Dr. Sam Pitroda’s movements, you’d know that he was appointed the Chairman of a newly formed National Innovation Council in Sep 2010. During his keynote at Sankalp Forum (May 2011), Pitroda announced the government’s intent to create a […]

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Impact Investing Landscape in India

Impact Investing Landscape in India

When I give my 2-minute elevator pitch about TechSangam to friends or acquaintances, I usually follow-up with the question “Do you know what social enterprises are?” The answer invariably is “No.” The only other term with a lower aided awareness is ‘impact investing’. Heck! I first heard the term during this year’s Sankalp Forum and […]

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World's Top 2 Philanthropists posing a rare casual look (Pic: courtesy topnews.net.nz)

Thoughts on philanthropy disruption

Two panel discussions at Sankalp Forum 2011, both on impact investing, provided food for thought. One of them focused on  missing impact investors in the Indian social entrepreneurship ecosystem. The other panel (with VCs from Acumen Fund, Omidyar Ventures, and Gray Ghost Ventures), focused on the future of impact investing in India. If one were […]

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A fresh look at the migration narrative

During one of the panel discussions at last week’s Sankalp Forum, an interesting conversation emerged. Two early-stage VCs (Seed Fund’s Mahesh Murthy and Kae Capital’s Sasha Mirchandani) were making the point that it wasn’t a case of missing ‘investors’ as much as it was a case of missing ‘entrepreneurs’. Of course, their perspective was that […]

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