India's third largest software services exporter Wipro has invested an undisclosed amount in Israel-based venture capital firm TLV Partners through its investment arm Wipro Ventures. This marks Wipro's first investment in a venture capital firm. The move potentially gives the outsourcing firm access to a portfolio of early-stage enterprise and security ventures in one of the world's most fertile startup ecosystems.
Image credit- Wipro gallery
According to Wipro's latest annual report, the company invested in the Tel Aviv-based venture capital firm sometime during the 2015-16.
TLV Partners is estimated to have a corpus of about $115 million and focuses mostly on ventures in the cyber security, enterprise software and the Internet of Things (IoT) space, according to CrunchBase. This aligns closely with Wipro's aims too, as it notes in its Annual report,
As part of a start-up engagement model, we have invested in building a world class ecosystem through a $100 million corporate venture capital fund, Wipro Ventures, aimed at investing in cutting edge startups in areas such as Digital, IoT, Big data, Open source, cyber security and Artificial Intelligence (AI). In 2015-16, Wipro Ventures has seen strong traction and scale. We have made six investments with a cumulative spend of US$ 15 million and a further committed spend of US$ 5 million in FY16.
Wipro considers its current focus areas to be in- big data and analytics, AI, IoT, mobility, cloud infra, fintech and security – technologies that are reshaping the future of enterprises.
Wipro Venture's is jointly led by Wipro executives Venu Pemmaraju and Biplab Adhya, who report to Wipro strategy chief Rishad Premji. In April, Wipro invested an undisclosed amount for a minority stake in Silicon Valley-based cybersecurity startup Vectra Networks.
Economic Times notes that Wipro's latest move underscores the increasing importance of Israel's enterprise software industry to India's $160-billion IT industry. In 2015, Infosys -bought Israel-based automation tech firm Panaya for $200 million.
Rival Infosys also invested in Silicon Valley based venture capital firm Vertex Ventures last year as part of a broader push to tap the Valley-based enterprise network. ET notes that Bengaluru-based Wipro so far spent $15-20 million on at least seven investments in ventures including big data startup Talena, AI startup Vicarious and Pune-based Altizon, which has built a new-age IoT powered platform.
Website- Wipro Ventures