MediaFile

Intel Outside: Chipmaker’s VC chief sees opportunity outside the US

July 27, 2012

 

The venture arm of the world-beating chipmaker Intel Capital is increasingly looking outside the U.S. for deals– and finding them in places ranging from Ghana to Turkey.

“We are seeing a lot more dealflow outside the U.S.” said Intel Capital President Arvind Sodhani, an Indian-born globetrotter who believes the trend will continue– if only because that’s where most of the world economy is.

The firm, which plans to invest $300-$500 million this year, is putting its money where Sodhani’s mouth is. Recent investments include Rancard, a Ghana-based company that provides cloud-based software for mobile services, and Kupivip, a Russian ecommerce business. That’s a far cry from most VCs, who if they invest outside the US at all, tend to stick to markets like westsern Europe– or for the more adventurous, Brazil and China.

Of Intel’s 33 new deals so far this year, 56 percent of dollars spent went overseas, Sodhani said. That compares to 51 percent for all of last year.

Of its six portfolio companies that completed IPOs year to date, half came from outside the US: Sinosun, a security-chip company based in China; MCX, a commodities-exchange in India; and AVG, a computer-security company founded in the Czech Republic.

Still, Sodhani– who was born in India and got his undergraduate degree in Britain before moving to the US– has a long way to go before catching up with the parent company. There, about 75 percent of revenue comes from outside the U.S.

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