This IIT and IIM alumni-backed fund is now pushing corporates to invest in and mentor Indian startups

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  • Ivycamp, the incubation arm of Ivycap ventures, has 5000 IIT/IIM alumni on board and 4000 startups.
  • They are working with corporates to help them find the right startups to work with.
  • Ivycamp has worked with the likes of Airbus, Yes Bank, HDFC Bank, Sonata and more.
In India, the startup craze was led by the graduates of IITs and IIMs. Investors too got on a call with you easier to speak funding if you were an IIT or IIM alum. Even today, stories of IIT graduates building a new startup are quite common.

And this became the premise of IvyCamp, a platform from Ivycap ventures which helps startups connect with investors and corporates, leveraging the IIT, IIM alumni network.

Vikram Gupta and Anju Gupta, friends from IIT Delhi, once got talking about the effective alumni networks abroad especially in the Bay Area.

They launched IvyCap ventures in 2011 with an aim to be driven by IIT alumni and one of its key investors too was the IIT alumni trust. In 2014, IvyCamp was launched which served as a platform to connect alumni, startup founders and corporates for investments, mentorship and partnership.

“A lot of the alumni were approaching us as to how they could be more involved in the Indian startup ecosystem. We wanted to create an engagement platform that could leverage this vast alumni network,” said Gupta.

Today, they have 5000 alums on board, 4000 startups and a global mentor and investor network.

Two years ago, they started working with corporates. “Airbus approached us to work with them for their accelerator because we had the domain expertise to evaluate startups,” said Gupta.

And that became another goldmine of projects, for corporates lined up for more and more accelerator programs and associations.

IvyCamp recently partnered with HDFC Life to launch a program called Futurance, to create business opportunities in insurance.

Over the years, the perspective of both startups and corporates have changed. Gupta said that startups have evolved and are no longer restricting their interests with investors and VC funds. They are now more eager to work with corporates to get the brand name, domain expertise and access to customers.

On the other side, corporates too face many problems. “They have an R&D arm but it doesn’t work as fast as the startup. They are realising that there is no readymade fixed solutions to the challenges and they will have to work with startups to get tailormade solutions,” said Gupta.
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