Wipro Ventures invests Rs9.78 crore in big data start-up Altizon Systems


Photo: Hemant Mishra/MintPhoto: Hemant Mishra/Mint

Bengaluru: Wipro Ltd’s corporate venture arm Wipro Ventures has picked up a minority stake in Pune-based big data start-up Altizon Systems Pvt. Ltd.

Wipro’s Rs.9.78 crore investment in Altizon allows it to have “a minority holding, not exceeding 20% of the outstanding share capital of the company”.

It expects to close its investment by 10 February, the company said in a statement to BSE late on Monday.

This is Wipro Venture’s first investment in a home-grown start-up in two years. Until now, it has taken stakes in four US-based start-ups.

Altizon claims to have built a smart big data platform that allows organizations to make sense of data sets gathered by connecting devices.

The move comes as software firms face an existential threat posed by start-ups focused on disruptive technologies, including artificial intelligence and cloud computing.

Wipro and larger rival Infosys Ltd believe they can take the technology solution offered by these start-ups to their clients.

Another Pune-based software product and technology company Persistent Systems Ltd took a 4% stake in Altizon in 2014.

Altizon had a revenue of Rs.30 lakh in the financial year 2014-15.

Wipro’s $100 million corporate venture arm, overseen by Rishad Premji (son of chairman Azim Premji), now has a minority stakes in five start-ups. These include its $30 million investment in Opera Solutions, a New Jersey-based data analytics company, and a $5 million investment in Drivestream Inc., a Virginia, US-based cloud solutions start-up.

During the April-June period last year, Wipro also made undisclosed investments in San Francisco-based artificial intelligence start-up Vicarious and California-based early-stage big data start-up Talena Inc.

Additionally, the Ventures arm sold its stake in US-based machine-learning start-up Axeda to a Nasdaq-listed firm PTC Inc.

Infosys, under boss Vishal Sikka, has already made seven investments from its $500 million innovation fund.