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A man walks past a Microsoft sign set up for the Microsoft BUILD conference at Moscone Center in San Francisco, April 28, 2015. VOA

Microsoft on Wednesday announced that its corporate venture fund M12 will invest in Indian startups with a funding size of $2 million to $10 million.

Rashmi Gopinath, partner at M12, will lead the fund’s investment portfolio in the country.


M12 announced its first India investment in the healthcare SaaS (software-as-a-service) startup called “Innovaccer”.

“M12 offers unique access to strategic go-to-market resources and relationships globally. I hope we will get a great traction in the Indian market,” Gopinath told reporters here.


Microsoft currently has 54 Azure Cloud regions — more than AWS and Google combined.

As the corporate venture arm for Microsoft, M12 (formerly Microsoft Ventures) invests in enterprise software companies in the Series A through C funding stage.

According to reports, venture capital investments in Indian tech business-to-business (B2B) start-ups have been trending upwards, with over $3.09 billion raised in equity funding across 415 deals in 2018 — 28 per cent more than $2.41 billion in 2017.

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“India offers unique competitive advantages by being home to top technical talent in the world in areas like including computer vision, robotics, blockchain and autonomous driving,” said Microsoft.

“We are thrilled to broaden M12’s reach to include India,” said Nagraj Kashyap, Global head of M12 and Corporate Vice President, Microsoft. (IANS)


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Indian wrestler Ravi Kumar (57kg) and Deepak Punia (86kg) enjoyed fruitful outings at the Tokyo Olympic Games as they secured semifinal berths in their respective weight categories at the Makuhari Messe on Wednesday.

On the opening day of the wrestling competition, Ravi Kumar defeated Bulgaria's Georgi Vangelov 14-4 on technical superiority to reach the last-four in the men's 57kg category, while compatriot Deepak Punia overcame China's Zushen Lin 6-3 on points to advance to the semifinals.

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Earlier, Ravi Kumar had won his opening-round bout by technical superiority against Colombia's Oscar Tigreros to secure a quarterfinal spot. Competing in the Round-of-16 bout against the Colombian wrestler, the 23-year-old Ravi Kumar, who is making his Olympic debut, showed no nerves as he dominated the bout to win by technical superiority (13-2).

Ravi Kumar landed attack after attack and went 13-2 up, winning the bout by technical superiority with minutes to spare. In wrestling, building up a 10-point lead over the opponent results in a victory by technical superiority.

India's 86kg freestyle wrestler Deepak Punia showed no signs of the niggle that had forced him to pull out of the Poland Open Ranking Series in Warsaw in June, as he defeated Nigeria's Ekerekeme Agiomor on technical superiority to secure a quarterfinal berth.

He got his Olympic campaign to a fine start as he was in control from the start of the bout and hardly ever allowed his Nigerian opponent any room to maneuver his moves, finally winning with a 12-1 on technical superiority.

Punia, who had also suffered an elbow injury just before the Games, was slow at the start but came into his own as the bout progressed, inflicting takedowns at regular intervals to earn points.

The Indian wrestler eased into a 4-1 lead at the break and extended his lead comfortably in the second period.

Punia, the silver medallist from the 2019 world wrestling championships, then set up a clash with China's Lin Zushen in the quarterfinals and defeated him 6-3.

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