Venture Engine 2015: International panel arrive for today’s finale

Tuesday, 23 June 2015 00:02 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

With the finale of Venture Engine 2015 set for today, 23 June, the top 11 will deliver their final pitch to a distinguished judging panel of investors from India, China, Singapore and the US who have flown into Sri Lanka for the event and will make up the panel of judges along with the Lankan Angel Network (LAN).

The 15-member panel will feature highly-respected investors from LAN including Vinod Hirdaramani, Shehara Jayawardena, Romesh Ranawana, Amal Sanderatne, Shyam Sathasivam, Altaf Jeevunjee and Anoop Kundanmal, along with eight international investors from multiple fields.

Padmaja Ruparel has been a key player in the entrepreneurial eco system of India for 25 years. Having built and grown a real estate business multi-fold from $ 1 m to $ 15 m, she is also President of the Indian Angel Network, an organisation she built from inception.  

Rajan Anandan, Co-Founder of Blue Ocean Ventures and an IAN member, is an active investor in early stage technology companies, and is currently a Vice President and Managing Director Google India and South East Asia.

Pankaj Jain is a partner at 500 Startups, which is the most active venture capital firms in the world with over 700 investments in past four years. He boasts 20 years of experience in hedge funds, startups, and venture capital across New York, the San Francisco Bay Area, London and India.  Frankie Fang is Managing Director of LGT Capital Partners. Currently managing over $ 50 billion AuM, globally it is one of the largest fund of funds in the world. Frankie is responsible for the firm’s investment and business development activities in mainland China.

Sandeep Reddy is Co-founder of Peepul Capital, one of largest and best performing venture funds in India. Sandeep takes overall responsibility in defining and executing Peepul Capital’s strategy and has spawned and built a number of entities as well as driving migration through their lifecycles. Sameer Mehta is Director of Atlas Venturez and Dr. Mehta’s Hospitals. Sameer is also the founder of Atlas Advisory (an enterprise accelerator) and leads the Chennai Angel Network. He brings over two decades of enterprise leadership, investment management and entrepreneurial experience to the panel. Satveer Singh Thakral is CEO of the Singapore Angel Network (SGAN). Satveer has experience in a range of industries across multiple countries, and focuses on enabling investments made through SGAN grow by leveraging the management expertise and global network of the Thakral Group.

Varun Jalan is a Director at the HK Jalan Group. Varun is an active angel investor who brings to the table a wealth of experience from his tenures as a consultant for both Oliver Wyman and McKinsey.

A number of other global investors will also be amongst the invitees at the event along with a cross section of investors from the LAN.

“This impressive lineup speaks volumes not only of our commitment to creating a strong platform for generating investment opportunities, but more importantly of the quality of business ideas that are coming through the program which have peaked the interest of investors not just locally but globally. These investors bring ‘smart money’ into the program, to date we have raised $ 5 million in funding and taken several startups to the region via their support. This is an opportunity that did not exist for Sri Lankan entrepreneurs before Venture Engine,” said Prajeeth Balasubramanium, Co-Founder of Blue Ocean Ventures.

Sponsored by Expolanka Holdings, Orion City and Dialog Axiata, Venture Engine, aims to enable and empower the vast entrepreneurial potential in Sri Lanka by creating a real opportunity for businesses to gain access to funding.

For more information on Venture Engine visit