Basis Vectors launches USD50m private equity and tech fund

Basis Vectors, a Berkshire Hathaway-style alternative investment and technology firm, has launched with plans to acquire, transform and accelerate vertically-focused B2B Software as a Service (SaaS) companies.

Basis Vectors transforms high-potential yet undervalued SaaS companies that demonstrate potential for long-term growth and robust balance sheets, and is uniquely positioned to help companies that have been strained by the global coronavirus pandemic. Investment in the firm’s USD50 million fund is led by Cianna Capital, a private investment fund focused on new-age technology investments, with participation from the UHNW family offices of Rajesh Jain, founder of Netcore, Abhishek Goel and Tracxn.

Co-founders Ambarish Gupta and Upmanyu Misra bring decades of broad industry, entrepreneurial and organisational expertise to Basis Vectors.

“We are not looking to buy superstar businesses for a quick flip or to provide predatory debt lines. Instead, we stand shoulder to shoulder with the management of high potential companies by taking over some of the day-to-day operations and scale strategies,” says Ambarish Gupta, co-founder and CEO of Basis Vectors. “Our real differentiator is our unique, proprietary operating model, SaaSMachine, which stands on four pillars: Engineering, Finance, Sales & Support, and Marketing. We call these the vectors of success.”

Leveraging its team of more than 40 on-demand professionals around the world, Basis Vectors injects bespoke capital as well as templatised and efficient operational structures into companies—a philosophy that allows for the transformation of companies that have deterministic, sticky customer bases and reasonable valuations.

As CEO, Gupta brings extensive business development experience, as well as marketing and organisational strategy and efficiency to the firm. Prior to launching Basis Vectors, Gupta co-founded Knowlarity Communications, a Sequoia-backed cloud telephony company in Asia, where he served as CEO. Prior, he served as a financial services strategist at McKinsey.

CIO Upmanyu is a venture capital and private equity professional with full investment cycle exposure. He currently leads Cianna Capital and has served bulge bracket institutions including Citi and JP Morgan for more than 10 years.

“Software entrepreneurs have long been pressurised by investors, often with disastrous results, to achieve unreasonable growth. We solve the problem of undervaluation due to a lack of exponential growth for SaaS companies with a strong product and sticky customer base,” says Misra. “Our approach is quite different from that of a typical fund in that we lead with the expectation that most of our portfolio companies will be around for decades.”

Industry experts and analysts predict the US economy will enter into a recession, triggering a need for seismic shifts in investment patterns. For SaaS companies to survive under the current economic upheaval, it is vital for them to run efficiently with low operational spending. Exponential value generation, especially from non-essential services and products, is poised to take a back seat. Meanwhile, investors will favour SaaS companies that provide meaningful services to enterprises and SMEs.

As Bain and Company’s 2019 Private Equity report noted: “The buy-and-build strategies that outperform typically rely on multiple paths to value creation. They take full advantage of multiple arbitrage, they identify and capture synergies and operational improvements, and they generate top-line growth by improving commercial capabilities and implementing smarter go-to-market strategies at each company acquired.”

“Basis Vectors is committed to saving promising SaaS companies during this economically volatile time. Believing that investing in long-term growth is more strategic, the firm applies a value investment, buy-and-hold mindset regarding wholesale investments,” says Gupta.