residency in antler india: venture capital fund antler opens residency in india for entrepreneurs

Mumbai: The India unit of early-stage venture capital firm Antler has launched a cohort-based program, Antler India Residency, for aspiring entrepreneurs.

It will bring together around 60-70 people with backgrounds in business and engineering to participate in an 8-week program. During the residency, Antler India would allow the participants to meet their future co-founders.

The fund’s partner, Rajiv Srivatsa, told ET that the inability to meet the co-founder is one of the main reasons startups don’t launch.

Antler expects that from each cohort between 8 and 10 companies will be born, which will have the opportunity to receive $270,000 for a 9% stake. The funds will help startups make at least five or six iterations of an early market-fit product, she said.

“Smart founders want at least a $3 million valuation and that’s very clear data coming out,” Srivatsa said. The valuation support for the pre-seed and seed rounds has moved around 2.5-5 times in the last two years, she added.

Antler India plans to run four such cohorts until calendar year 2023 and has allocated around $15 million for it. The industry-independent program will bring together people with backgrounds in business and engineering.

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In 2021, when Antler India launched, it announced plans to roll out $100-$150 million across 100+ Indian startups over the next three years.

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Applications to join the program will be posted on Monday and will begin in June. Participants will be paid Rs 100,000 per month as a stipend. The program is divided into two phases.

“Phase 1 of the Residency will focus on helping foster connections and creating situations and challenges to aid in the process. In this phase, founders will also spend time validating and developing their ideas. In Phase 2, successfully formed teams will develop their idea, where we will support them through training and access to resources,” said Nandini Vishwanath, director of the Antler India program in a statement.

Srivatsa said the cohort will likely be 70% first-time founders with the rest looking for a co-founder to pitch their ideas.

“Last year, there were people who just wanted to jump in and become founders. I don’t think anyone has seen the scope of the scale of things because of the number of unicorns and all that,” Srivatsa said. “This year, I feel like the reversal of sentiment has already started, and while it always has a cascading effect from late stage to early stage, it has already started to affect the number of people who want to take the first step, as it is has lowered the hazard quotient. certainly reduced,” he said.

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