Microsoft pumps large amounts of money in IoT, blockchain Indian startups

Costea Lestoc By: Costea Lestoc
2 minute read
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Microsoft’s corporate venture arm was present in India a few years ago, and it was managed by a Redmond team with its headquarters in the U.S.

Now, it seems that Microsoft’s plans also include resurrecting this corporate venture arm. The company wants to set up an office with a local team this time that will look for startups worth investing in. The startups should be from various areas including the IoT, autonomous vehicles, and of course the successful blockchain technology.

Reviving the venture arm by relocating the headquarters

CEO Satya Nadella hired Peggy Johnson as global vice-president a few years ago who managed to revive the venture arm by teaming up with Nagraj Kashyap from Qualcomm to lead things. The headquarters was also relocated to Silicon Valley, having offices also in London, New York, Israel and Tel Aviv. Now the latest plans include setting an office in India as well.

Microsoft’s main ambitions in India

Johnson stated that the “core ambitions’ are now revolving around the cloud infrastructure, connectivity, AI and machine learning. Microsoft also chose India for the fact that the Indian productivity is mobile only. The company’s focus is on Series A and B funding which is placed somewhere between 2 to 10 million dollars.

Currently, Microsoft Ventures is backing up more than 45 startups all over the world. The company gets increased signals into the startup community via its venture arm. Besides this, Microsoft is also getting back on track along with various capital firms in order to better understand the development of the emerging technologies.

Johnson also said that Microsoft didn’t use to have a fund and this was an essential flaw because it was not able to invest in companies that “graduated from the accelerator.” Now, the option is available in the U.S. and India as well. Johnson’s team consists of enthusiasts passionate about backing startups.

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