Applied Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning & IoT focused early stage venture fund pi Ventures announced the first close of their maiden fund at $13mn. The $30mn fund is expected to close within this year. Limited partners include India’s top lender to small businesses, SIDBI, prominent family offices from USA, Canada, Singapore & India and leading entrepreneurs like Mohandas Pai, Binny Bansal, Deep Kalra, Sanjeev Bikchandani and Bhupen Shah among others.

Co-founded by Manish Singhal and Umakant Soni, pi Ventures will invest in early stage start-ups that focus on solving problems in healthcare, logistics, retail, fin-tech and enterprise sectors using AI, ML and IoT. The Bengaluru based VC plans to invest in 18-20 start-ups from this fund over a 3-4 year time frame.

Manish Singhal, Founding Partner, pi Ventures and hardware techie at heart says, “India is the dark horse in the AI race given it has lot of data, brilliant data science talent & early adoption environment due to broken processes and we are happy to play a part in helping India leapfrog with AI. We are thankful to our early backers, investors and founders who have chosen to work with us. We are very excited to play a role in building a strong AI based product ecosystem in India.”

pi Ventures has made three investments so far in the healthcare & energy-efficiency space, namely SigTuple, Zenatix and ten3T. SigTuple is in the medical diagnostic space and is creating a deep learning driven, cloud based solution for detection of abnormalities and trends in medical data, for blood diagnosis. Zenatix is a data-driven energy efficiency company that uses advanced machine learning based models and delivers 10 to 30% energy efficiency to large commercial consumers of electricity along with predictive insights to prevent downtown. ten3T is in continuous monitoring of medical data like ECG in real time through its own smart patches to enable mobile ICU for smaller hospitals.

pi Ventures is India’s first Applied Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning & IoT focused early stage venture fund and was founded in mid 2016 by Manish Singhal and Umakant Soni. Both come with rich experience in setting up, building and scaling companies. Manish has been Cofounder & CEO at LetsVenture and a prominent angel investor. He has rich product experience having worked with Sling Media, Ittiam Systems, Motorola and wrote a part of MPEG 4 standards, the dominant video standard even today. Umakant Soni was Director India, Science Inc & Co-founder of one of the first AI BOT company out of India, called Vimagino

pi Ventures holds interesting #chAI (AI over a cup of chai) sessions to bring together and encourage the ecosystem. An open-for- all session, it has been attended by researchers from universities, startups, large companies and students. Startup founders share how they use AI to solve problems. With eight
sessions so far (5 in Bangalore and 3 in New Delhi) it leads to a lot of cross pollination of ideas among founders and educates the audience about best practices in building AI companies.

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