True North

Funds managed

Fund nameAsset ClassLicense
Fund IPE- Mid sizedSEBI AIF Cat 2
Fund IIPE- Mid sizedSEBI AIF Cat 2
Fund IIIPE- Mid sizedSEBI AIF Cat 2
Fund IVPE- Mid sizedSEBI AIF Cat 2
Fund VPE- Mid sizedSEBI AIF Cat 2
Fund VI

About the AMC

  • 5 Investment vehicles, 21 years, 30+ Indian businesses, $2bln combined corpus, 35+ international institutional investors
  • True North traces its origins back to 1999, when it was originally named India Value Fund. The company was founded with a view towards investing in mid-sized, profitable, India-centric businesses, and then transforming them into world-class industry leaders that is built upon the foundation of strong values.
  • Deep knowledge and understanding of Indian markets has led True North to successfully launch five independent investment funds, with a combined corpus of ~US$ 2 billion. These funds have been raised from over 35 high quality international institutions with a combined investable capital base of over US$ 1 trillion. Currently, True North is investing out of Fund V, which has a corpus of US$ 700 million.
  • Over the last two decades, True North has invested ~US$ 1.5 billion across 30+ businesses. It has successfully transformed many of these companies into large businesses that are valuable, enduring, and socially responsible, creating immense value for all stakeholders.
  • The team consists of a balanced mix of investment and business professionals, with deep investing and operating experience.

Across sectors, expertise and knowledge remain the most valuable tools.

True North is sector-agnostic, but has built particular expertise in consumer, financial services and healthcare services. We invest in India centric private businesses but are open to listed entities and cross-border opportunities. Preferred investments are in the range between US$ 50 and 100 million. In certain situations, this investment can increase to up to US$ 300 million.

True North does not invest in start-ups, early stage businesses, real-estate, core infrastructure, commodities and the ‘sin’ industries.

True North is a founding partner of the Global PE Alliance – an alliance between best-known mid-market PE firms in emerging and developed markets.

Key staff

  • Satish Chander, Partner- Satish joined True North in 2005 and is based in Bengaluru. He joined the firm as part of the business management team and worked with companies across healthcare, media, retail and industrials. He is now part of the investment team and is responsible for investments in the healthcare sector. He holds a Mechanical Engineering degree from the IIT, Chennai and a Post Graduate Diploma in Management from the IIM, Kolkata. Prior to joining True North, Satish had six years of experience working with Tata Motors, Accenture and JP Morgan in India.
  • Vishal Nevatia, Managing Partner- Vishal has been True North’s Managing Partner since its inception in 1999. He plays a crucial role in defining strategies, building the team and managing all stakeholder relationships. He is also involved in investing in new businesses, as well as in supporting portfolio companies. Vishal is a commerce graduate and a qualified Chartered Accountant. Before True North, Vishal worked with Andersen for 11 years, rising to the position of Director, Corporate Finance.

Investment Philosophy (for firm)

‘Ambition is nothing without the ability to sustain it.

 It’s what we call value beyond capital’

  • True North aims to be a ‘business partner’, going beyond infusing capital to bring in entrepreneurship, high quality teams, best practices and systems.
  • True North adopts a ‘Buy and Build’ or an ‘Invest and Build’ model. In the former, True North, as a majority stakeholder, drives the business and creates a three-way partnership to leverage strengths of the founders, the new management team and True North. In the latter, True North plays the role of a supportive minority partner and fully supports existing entrepreneurs or management teams. This role is defined ahead of the investment.
  • Each business benefits by gaining access to True North’s highly skilled and experienced business management team, specialised processes and systems, and a vast network of competent and committed industry experts that have been developed over the years. True North also helps identify inorganic acquisition targets and most importantly, enables individual businesses to attract top CxO talent.

Media

Title: India value fund sees rising in buyout deals, Source: Business Standard, Date: 8th Oct 2015

https://truenorth.co.in/pdf/08%20Oct%202015%20-%20Business%20Standard.pdf

With the fifth fund they did plan to increase their buyout deals, stated that 755 of the investments will be of matter where they can hold control. 

Title: India Value Fund reduces fund size by 15%, Source: Asian Venture Capital Journal , Date: 15 Nov 2012

https://truenorth.co.in/pdf/AVCJ%20Nov%2015_2012%20IVFA%20reduces%20fund%20size.pdf

As IVFA began its investment phase the Indian economy was rebounding and this resulted in a substantial increase in valuations in 2010 and 2011. Competition among private equity firms was also on the rise: more than $31 billion was raised for India-focused funds between 2006 and 2008 and these managers were under pressure to deploy. India Value Fund Advisors (IVFA) has trimmed its fund size by 15%, returning $100 million of the approximately $700 million corpus to LPs in response to changes in the investment environment. Management fees charged on that $100 million since inception have also been reimbursed to LPs. “

Title: Should managers be frowned upon, Source: Asian Venture Capital Journal, Date: 13th Nov 2012

https://truenorth.co.in/pdf/AVCJNov13_2012%20Editorial%20viewpoint%20on%20fund%20re-size.pdf

Editor’s point of view on IVFA return some amount back to LP’s of their fourth fund, while looking at the condition of the Indian economy back in 2011 – 2012. LP’s should not frown upon, given the decision is strategically correct.

Analyst questions

  • As mentioned in one of the articles, your firm is constantly compared to Everstone capital and Kedaara Capital, what makes you stand out to them? What unique factor has to be considered about you?
  • Reducing the fund size is quite rare, what exactly were the parameters which made you take that decision? Was there something more to it other than the concern for deployment of the capital raised?
  • Can you brief us about the one PIPE deal which happened which was mentioned in one of your articles?

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