2008 was supposed to be the golden year of venture investing in India. I was optimistic that investments would breach the psychological $1 billion mark. After the $875 million (according to Venture Intelligence) invested during calendar year 2007, it seemed logical. But, as per Venture Intelligence’s estimates, investments till November 2008 were at $735 million. It is unlikely that December, which has been the worst hit since the US recession became official, has been a great month for deals.
Overall, India’s private equity (including venture capital) investment numbers for 2008 are down. Grant Thornton India, reporting numbers till December 15, puts total investments at $10.42 billion against $19.03 billion in 2007 (full year) — that’s a drop of over 45 per cent. The total number of deals has dropped from 1081 in 2007 to 751 in 2008.
Here’s a look at five notable venture deals in 2008: