2:47 am - Thursday November 5, 2015

Infosys co-founder plans angel fund for tech start-ups

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Infosys co-founder S. Gopalakrishnan, who recently exited the post of Executive Vice-Chairman, hopes to continue with angel investing in technology start-ups, besides pursuing opportunities in investing and supporting brain research.

Speaking on the sidelines of a media conference to announce the CII’s 10th India Innovation Summit, Mr. Gopalakrishnan said: “Obviously, what I know well is technology. Within this, the areas of digital marketing and e-retailing appear to be hot.” He said he might look at these fields as potential investment areas after his retirement in October.

Mr. Gopalakrishnan has not invested in start-ups till now. However, he has investments in Start-up Village, a business incubator in Kochi, jointly funded by the government and some private investors. The Infosys co-founder is the chief mentor of the venture. He said it was innovation in the world of IT that interested him, a field seeing quick blurring of lines between products and services.

Earlier this year, Mr. Gopalakrishnan had announced a donation of $1.80 million to Carnegie Mellon University to set up a partnership with the Centre for Brain Research (CBR) at the Indian Institute of Science (IISc.) here. The CBR is also set up with a contribution from his Prateeksha Trust. Mr. Gopalakrishnan hoped that centre would evolve into a “world class centre, which would research into diseases and finding cures for conditions such as Alzheimers, Parkinsons and Dementia.” “I hope we can focus on one aspect of the brain, that is, understand how the brain ages,” he added.

As chair of the CII’s National Committee on Innovation and Entrepreneurship, he said he wouldfocus on taking the message across the country, including rural areas. “I am thinking of some specific programmes on rural innovation.” Apart from these activities, Mr. Gopalakrishnan said he and his family would continue their interest in philanthropy.

Mr. Gopalakrishnan announced that the Indian Innovation Summit, themed Innovation for inclusive growth, would be held here on August 8 and 9.

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