Cisco arm invests into VC fund Stellaris Venture

Venture capital fund Stellaris Venture Partners has roped in Cisco Investments, an arm of technology conglomerate Cisco, as a limited partner (investors in a fund). Stellaris, which was founded by three former managing directors of one of the country’s oldest VC firms — Helion Venture Partners — last year, also has the backing of Infosys and SAP.

Stellaris is looking to close a $100 million for its maiden Fund I. Sources said Cisco may have pumped around $10 million in the fund.

Launched by Ritesh Banglani, Alok Goyal and Rahul Chowdhri, Stellaris closed around $50 million early last year. Since then it has backed startups like Whatfix — a SaaS-based performance support platform, mfine — an AIdriven healthcare network, Noticeboard — a communication platform for frontline teams and Wydr — a mobile wholesale e-commerce. The fund plans to invest in earlystage startups working in the area of cloud, internet of things, machine learning, enterprise applications, analytics as well as consumer- and business-centric startups.

“We are excited that global technology pioneer Cisco has invested in our fund, and look forward to tapping their deep technology expertise and global market reach for the benefit of our portfolio companies,” said Goyal, partner at Stellaris Venture Partners.

Stellaris got investments from the likes of Infosys, Small Industries Development Bank of India (Sidbi), various family offices, a string of entrepreneurs and high-net worth professionals, creating a mix of limited partners. “We are supporting all stages of startup development, including directly and indirectly funding the most promising new digital companies across India. With a strong leadership team and extensive enterprise technology expertise, we are pleased to add Stellaris Ventures to our growing portfolio of investments in India,” said Sameer Garde, president, Cisco India and SAARC.

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