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How will funding for Indian start-ups change post COVID-19?

Posted on 12 May, 2020


“In the post-COVID-19 setting, there would be greater emphasis on business models that have the ability to sustain cash for longer, and on businesses with higher contribution margins,” says Pankaj Raina, Managing Director, Zephyr Peacock India.

Raina added that for its portfolio companies, Zephyr Peacock is exploring more scope for growth, even if it means altering their business models in the post-COVID-19 world.

Click here to read the full article on “The Hindu Business Line” 

Below is an excerpt from the post that first appeared on The Hindu Business Line on 12 May 2020:


The funding for Indian start-ups took a hit in March and April, as anticipated, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. While investments fell 81.1 per cent to $0.33 billion in March 2020 from $1.73 billion in March 2019, April 2020 saw the funding figure plunge a further 84.3 per cent year-on-year to $0.12 billion, compared with $0.78 billion in the same month last year, according to data from Tracxn, a firm that tracks investments and financials of private companies and start-ups. In such a situation, how will investments pan out in the upcoming months? Investors say they are going to be a little more exacting about cash flows and focus more on how much of a cash runway the company has, in the post-COVID-19 scenario.

“In the post-COVID-19 setting, there would be greater emphasis on business models that have the ability to sustain cash for longer, and on businesses with higher contribution margins,” says Pankaj Raina, Managing Director, Zephyr Peacock India.

Raina said that they would place more emphasis on essentials. He added that for the portfolio of companies they have already invested in, they are trying to explore more scope for them to grow, even if it means altering their business models in the post-COVID-19 world.”

Click here to read the full article on “The Hindu Business Line” 


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Zephyr Management is a global emerging markets investment manager, specializing in the creation and management of highly focused private equity funds

Since its inception in 1994, Zephyr has sponsored 22 investment funds in both public and private securities markets representing approximately $1.2 billion in combined commitments and assets under management

Emerging Markets Focus

The firm has initiated several private equity funds investing in several African countries, South Korea, Mexico, India, and Sri Lanka since its founding. Zephyr's funds serve medium size enterprises that are often ignored by larger private equity players. Zephyr funds provide growth capital to established companies with proven business models and sustainable competitive advantages.

Investment activities are currently focused on India, Sri Lanka and Africa.

Zephyr Peacock India

Zephyr Peacock India provides equity financing for fast growing, small to medium sized companies led by strong entrepreneurs and management teams.

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Emerald Sri Lanka Fund

Emerald Fund provides equity financing for fast growing, small to medium sized (SME) Sri Lankan companies led by strong entrepreneurs & management teams.

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Zephyr Acorn provides equity

Zephyr Acorn provides equity financing and business support to innovative early-stage companies in East Africa.

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Active Portfolio Support

The firm's special expertise lies in bringing global best practices to medium-sized growing companies by assisting them in conceptualizing sustainable business strategy, management development, compensation, ESG, expansion outside of their home country, capital structure and positioning for stock exchange listing or trade sale.