Most VC’s say they look for several key attributes when an investment opportunity comes together. It usually has to do with the entrepreneurs and the team, technology, market opportunity, competitive differentiation and market traction. When Manthan Systems, a leading provider of Business Intelligence and Analytics solutions for the retail and consumer packaged goods industries, met with us and was seeking funding, it was obvious that this was an exciting investment opportunity for the firm. Last week NVP announced its investment in Manthan Systems.
The things we looked for in this investment all lined up:
- Experienced Team: The founding team – CEO & founder Atul Jalan, is a successful serial entrepreneur. He sold his previous company, NetKraft, also in the retail sector, to ADEA Inc. Manthan Systems’ CTO, Vikas Gupta, has more than 15 years of technology experience in the retail space and was part of the founding team, with Jalan, at NetKraft. Pete Charness, the president of U.S. operations, also has deep experience in the supply chain and retail sectors, and his expertise lies in product management and marketing. The combination of experience, domain expertise and previous working relationships of the team showed us that this group was not only capable of building a big business, but also could do so without some of the growing pains that inexperienced or unfamiliar teams might face.
- Market Opportunity: Gartner estimated that the retail sector business application software market was an $8.1B market in 2009. This industry has only grown and become more sophisticated. Additionally, Gartner estimates that the retail analytics market is segmented and there are more that 10,000 + small to medium retailers (a 0.5B – $2B market) worldwide. This is a tremendous opportunity for Manthan to pursue many customers worldwide.
- Market Traction: Today, Manthan’s retail performance management solutions have been deployed with 70 of the biggest names in retail such as McDonald’s, Crocs, Ecco, Love’s, Ashley Stewart, Teavana, Robinsons, Ripley, Woolworth, SM Retail, Mydin, Abenson, Haggen and GAME Group Plc.
We are pleased and honored to support the Manthan team. As I noted in the press release, backing Manthan reinforces NVP’s belief in the next generation business analytics sector as shown through the firm’s recent investments in such companies as 1010data and The Retail Equation (TRE). For more information visit Manthan Systems, or click here to see a full copy of the funding press release. Additional details on the funding can also be found here.