VC Funds Continue to Flow Into IT Sector

by Manu Sharma    Jan 29, 2009

The year 2009 is slated to be an interesting year for entrepreneurs and venture capitalists (VCs) alike. Even as the global recession continues to haunt industries, many VCs are very bullish on India. A global venture capital firm, Norwest Venture Partners (NVP), has invested a sum of Rs 20 crore in Appnomic Systems, an infrastructure management services (IMS) company.

Pramod Haque, managing partner at NVP, a global venture capital fund, said, " I know this time the recession is different and may take longer time to recover than earlier. But we see tremendous opportunities as an outcome of the recession."

"I feel is it is good time to invest in growth equity sectors as the valuations are down. I see more opportunities due to slowdown. But it’s true that certain VCs are following a certain trend in the US and fewer companies are getting funded today. I see that trend to continue till end of 2009 or early 2010," he said.

The Bangalore-based Appnomic, with operations in India, the Middle East and Africa, will use the funds to strengthen its existing market presence, expand into the US market and further build out its innovative product and service offerings.

The managed services market is already a mature industry however, the offshoring of infrastructure management services (IMS) to India is still in its infancy. The market opportunities for IMS in India is predicted to be as large as the application development and maintenance sector, said Haque.

"The growing pressure on corporations to better handle the complex IT requirements demanded by internal and external regulators is accelerating the need for simplification and efficient management of IT at a low cost, and we believe that about 75% of infrastructure management opportunities can be offshored," said D Padmanabhan, MD & CEO of Appnomic Systems. "Appnomic has the next-generation technology, proven customer traction and a seasoned team that is necessary to capitalize on the growing market needs."

The company, which started two and a half years ago, has 390 employees and is experiencing a 100% growth. The company has about 23 customers in banking, Internet portal sites, BPO and remote management.

"I don’t see why the Satyam (SATYAM) incident should dampen our investment plans. Even in the US, the Bernard Madoff incident has seen a $50 billion fraud case recently. Incidents like these keep happening, but don’t affect us in any way," Haque said.

"NVP has made significant investments in India over the years. In fact, we have made about seven or eight direct investments and about 20 cross-based operations in India," he added.

Recently, the company has invested in three companies - Persistent, Adventity and Yatra.

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