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.