Microsoft Ventures Announces First Set Of Think Next Initiatives In Association With Ispirt
BANGALORE: Microsoft Ventures in India today announced the first set of initiatives under the Think Next program, in association with iSPIRT Foundation. These initiatives are aimed at resolving the key issues responsible for the lack of meaningful exits in India’s software product industry, which is a major cause for concern among India’s product startups. Together with iSPIRT, Microsoft Ventures will conduct workshops to prepare Indian entrepreneurs for M&A, focusing on due diligence, valuation and presenting on their behalf to potential acquirers. As part of their M&A connect program, iSPIRT will continue to build deep relationships with Corporate Development teams in large organizations to gain insights into their mandates and priorities, and work closely with VCs and entrepreneurs to help facilitate exits through acquisitions.
Launched in May 2014 by Microsoft Ventures in India, Think Next provides a forum to sharpen conversations in the startup ecosystem by providing a platform for all stakeholders to network, deliberate and take measurable steps to resolve some key issues. A key topic of discussion at the first Think Next event in May was why, despite huge innovation and rising entrepreneurship, most Indian product companies have not been able to achieve meaningful exits. According to global numbers released by E&Y, the first quarter of 2014 saw $66.6 billion in disclosed deal values, the highest in 14 years. However, India presents a rather less rosy picture. According to a recently released study by iSPIRT and Signal Hill, India has seen 159 M&A deals in the timeframe 2010-present, at an overall value of $1.78 billion. This means that the average deal size is $11 million, nearly 10 times lower than that of the Silicon Valley!