Canadian startup accelerator Ryerson Futures to launch $5M seed fund in India

Ryerson Futures Inc (RFI), a Toronto-based technology startup incubator, is planning to launch a seed fund worth $5 million in India. Through seed fund RFI will seek to invest between $50,000 and $500,000 each in 12-15 startups every year reported VCCircle. RFI will invest in startups with a focus on mobile, web, data, B2B and B2C companies

"The fund is still work in progress. As of now, it is just Ryerson and a high net-worth individual (HNI) from Mumbai in a 50:50 joint venture," said Ajay Ramasubramaniam, director of business development (India) at Ryerson Futures. "We will be in a better position to talk more about the fund in the next couple of months."

Ryerson, in partnership with Bombay Stock Exchange Institute in Mumbai, recently launched a startup accelerator called Zone Startups in India. According to Ramasubramaniam, while the seed fund prefers investing in its own incubatee firms, it will also look at outside opportunities, in the form of syndicate deals.

Ryerson Futures Inc. (RFI) is a for-profit entity wholly owned by Ryerson University. RFI works with early stage companies connected to the Ryerson community through the Digital Media Zone at Ryerson University (DMZ) and other areas across the University. Its mission is to invest in companies using outside investor money and obtain equity in consideration for acceleration and advisory services. RFI has incubated 125+ companies since launch in 2010, raising in excess of $25m in funding in 2013 alone.

The Digital Media Zone at Ryerson University (DMZ) has already helped to incubate successful companies such as 500px, Flybits and HitSend.

ZoneStartups India is a collaboration between The Bombay Stock Exchange Inc.(BSEI), Ryerson University, and Ryerson Futures which helps entrepreneurs expand into both the Indian and Canadian markets, focusing on entrepreneurship development and the growth of their companies.

Started in February this year, Zone Startups in India has already incubated 36 startups across data analytics, e-commerce, education, hardware technology, human computing interface, mobile payments, healthcare and enabling platforms. Its incubatees include AasaanPay, Blynk, Cubicle, DrawTime, LinkMySport and RetailNav.

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