Paytm’s Vijay Shekhar Sharma Launches First Fund To Back AI, EV Startups

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Paytm's Vijay Shekhar Sharma Launches First Fund To Back AI, EV Startups

Paytm Founder and Chief Executive Officer Vijay Shekhar Sharma launched his maiden fund, VSS Investments, with an eye on backing electric vehicles and artificial intelligence-led startups. The fund is a SEBI-approved, category II alternative investment fund with an initial size of Rs 20 crore and a green shoe of Rs 10 crore, making the total corpus of Rs 30 crore, the company said in a statement on Monday.

The fund has been sponsored by VSS Investco Pvt., an entity owned and controlled by Sharma. Other external investors will also participate in the fund, and it will be actively managed by a professional investment manager.

“The fund will target artificial intelligence and electric vehicles-related startups, that are incubated in India, and are specially focused to serve Indian consumers and businesses,” the statement said. Various follow-on investments in Sharma’s current startup investments in the consumer and B2B tech spaces will also come from this fund, it said.

“The Indian startup ecosystem has some of the brightest entrepreneurs in the world, and we have the potential to become a powerhouse of advanced technology and AI-driven innovation.

The launch of this fund is a continuation of my belief in supporting young and promising Indian founders, aligned with the fact that technology has a huge role to play in the development of the country,” Sharma said. As an angel investor, Sharma has backed several startups, including Ola Electric, Josh Talks, Mesa School, Unnati, Kawa Space, Praan, GOQii, KWH Bikes, Daalchini and Treebo Hotels.

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