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“$20 billion could be spent in India every year on non-formal learning by indie entrepreneurs”

Elevation Capital’s Mayank Khanduja misses the chance encounters with start-up founders but is glad for unexpected opportunities
 

A venture capitalist walks into a bar... few years later, the bar is a restobar serving world cuisine and hosting live shows that discover indie bands. VCs are constantly looking for opportunities, even when out to have a drink or when the rest of the world is down with a flu. In this pandemic, Elevation Capital’s (formerly SAIF Partners) managing director Mayank Khanduja has kept a keen eye out for tappable trends and found some. In this conversation with Outlook Business, Khanduja shares the learning from managing such an unprecedented crisis and why his optimism is still intact.

Which sector surprised you this year, and which disappointed you?

While the growth of edtech and gaming during COVID is well chronicled, we are also very excited to see the rapid adoption of technology among the SMEs and even MSMEs in India. These business users are in fact consumers first, and thus, have latched on to technology products that help them push their businesses digitally. We witnessed this first-hand in the growth of IndiaMART. On the flip side, we were expecting digital healthcare to go mainstream but the progress on that has been slow, despite tailwind from COVID.

How did COVID change the world of investing? 

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