There is no limit to possibilities and if you have ever pursued something with sheer, illogical passion then you will agree. If you have the courage to set out on a journey alone you are bound to come across help in terms of execution, investors, innovative marketing or any other area.
It is also important to expect the unexpected in the start-up industry. You might be queuing up in front of venture capitalists, angel and private investors but do you know there are more, unconventional way to receive funding?
Yes, the industry geeks will be happy to know that many popular celeb faces have started funding start-ups. Here are a few names who have trusted businesses with potential in the recent times:
1. Sachin Tendulkar
Apart from being a full-time cricketing legend Sachin Tendulkar is also a well-known face in the startup investor market. Till now, he has invested in seven start-ups and is hitting straight sixes in his second innings as an investor, too. He has invested in diverse fields including hotels and sports.
The startups backed by Sachin are Musafir (a UAE-based travel portal founded in 2007), Smaaash Entertainment (sports simulation venture where Sachin has 18 percent equity stake), two restaurants, Kochi Franchise (one of soccer clubs of Indian Super League), S Drive and Sach (products related to healthcare, sports, and fitness), Universal Collectabilia (Sachin has 26 percent stake in this firm of celebrity merchandise and brand extension), CallHeath (a Hyderabad-based healthcare start-up) and Mumbai franchise of International Tennis Premier League.
2. Yuvraj Singh
Cricketer Yuvraj Singh is another frontrunners in the start-up ecosystem who has funded budding businesses as an angel investor. He initiative YouWeCan Ventures supports upcoming start-ups and helps them scale up their ventures to the next level.
Till date, his organization has seed funded start-up ventures like Vyomo (a mobile app for beauty and wellness), Moovo (a Delhi-based on-demand logistics booking platform), Black White Orange (a Mumbai-based start-up offering licensing solutions), Cartisan (a start-up from Bengaluru offering automotive services), Healthians (helps to find affordable healthcare), Edukart (an education marketplace operating from Delhi), SportyBeans (offering classes on different sports), and Carl’s Jr chain (the Indian franchisee of US-based fast food chain).
3. Alia Bhatt
Twenty-four-year-old Bollywood actress Alia Bhatt has a small minority stake in the fashion-tech startup StyleCracker against offering them a pre-series A funding.
As it often happens, the amount invested remains undisclosed. She, however, conveyed that the move is based more on the friendship she shares with the StyleCracker board.
4. Sourav Ganguly
Sourav Ganguly, the former captain of the Indian cricket team, has also turned an investor when he pumped in Rs 3 crore in the startup venture Flickstree, a tech-entertainment company established in 2014. The start-up was a brainchild of a coding maestro and two ex-executives from Asian Paints.
They created an advanced, AI-powered algorithm having the ability to watch videos just like a human being and then offer movie and video recommendations according to your choice. Sourav also has stakes in ATK Franchise, a soccer franchise of Indian Super League.
5. Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli, the current captain of the Indian cricket team, is one of the most famous celebrities in the industry. Apart from his finesse in batting, he has also shown impeccable skills as a celeb-turned-businessman.
He has masterfully diverted his investments in different fields and some of his key investments are: FC Goa Franchise in Indian Super League (soccer), WROGN (a fashion enterprise which has association with Myntra and Shoppers Stop), Sport Convo (London-based social media startup) where he is also a brand ambassador, Chisel Gym, and Fitness centre (invested Rs 90 crore to start this chain of fitness center in 2015), UAE Royals (Dubai based tennis franchise) and Bengaluru Yodhas (wrestling franchise), and Stepathlon Kids (a fitness startup for kids having fitness issues).
6. PV Sindhu
PV Sindhu has invested Rs 4 crore in Hyderabad-based startup CallHealth, a healthcare services aggregator where Sachin Tendulkar also invested Rs 12 crore. This may have been the start of many of her upcoming venture as a startup investor.
7. Aamir Khan
Bollywood actor Aamir Khan has turned an investor after providing seed funds to furniture rental start-up Furlenco. He has invested Rs 2 crore, but for now, will not endorse the startup.
None of the start-ups mentioned above had planned on securing funding from celebrities but it happened nonetheless. As the ecosystem expands more and more options will come forward in support of infant stage businesses.
If your idea has the potential simply keep working on it until a door opens up. A potent revenue model is something that attracts investors of all kinds.
Name more celeb-turned-investors in the comment section and share this interesting article.