pi Ventures to invest in 18-24 IoT and AI startups in India: Manish Singhal

Manish Singhal, Founding Partner at Pi Ventures-
Manish Singhal, Founding Partner at Pi Ventures-

pi Ventures invests between US$100,000 and US$1 million in startups in the AI, machine learning and IoT sectors

pi Ventures, an early-stage VC fund launched by veteran investor and serial entrepreneur Manish Singhal, is looking to invest in 12-24 startups from India from the current fund.
With a corpus of U$30 million, pi Ventures is mainly looking for opportunities in the Artificial Intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML), and Internet of Things (IoT) sectors, Singhal said in a interview with Startagist.com.

Manish Singhal, Founding Partner at Pi Ventures-
Manish Singhal, Founding Partner at pi Ventures-

pi Ventures has already invested in ten3T — a startup that builds wearable medical devices that collects and integrates medical grade data in real time. It has also committed to one more startup. It invests between US$100,000 and US$1 million each based on various factors.

“While there are many VC investors in the technology space, there is no specialised funds in AI, ML and IoT. Existing VCs are hesitant to invest in these areas, as they don’t understand the space. The team behind pi Ventures have founded startups in these areas and so understanding comes naturally to us,” he said.

According to him, pi Ventures is India’s first Applied Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning & IoT focused fund. The VC firm focuses on healthcare, logistics, retail, fintech and enterprise sectors. It is backed by some of the leading entrepreneurs globally.
With over 24 years’ experience in building and investing in startups, Singhal has been active in the Indian startup ecosystem. He is also the co-founder of LetsVenture, one of the leading online deal-making platforms in India. He later quit LetsVenture due to the differences with other co-founders.

Before LetsVenture, he was the India head of Sling Media, a Silicon Valley-based consumer electronic startup. Singhal has invested in over a dozen startups in his personal capacity.

AI to change the landscape of India’s healthcare space

Singhal also said that AI and ML can bring drastic change to the healthcare, fintech and logistics industries in India. AI has already made its way into the consumer Internet space and it is expected to play much bigger roles in other industries.

“I think healthcare is going to greatly benefit from AI and it can democratise the healthcare access in the country,” he added. “As you already know, the doctor-patient ratio in India is very low. We can improve healthcare by building more intelligent system, so that doctors will be able to remotely monitor patients. It offloads the doctor from meeting patients in person, and thus you can save more people with fewer doctors,” he said.

He added that AI and machine learning technologies can also make the diagnostic system much easier and more automated — thus more people get access to healthcare.

“Logistics also stands to get the benefits of AI in future. As you know most logistics companies spend a huge chunk of their budget on the roads due to the inefficient infrastructure. AI-driven logistics solutions can update you about the traffic congestion and tells you what to do and what not,” he said.


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