It’s a fact that an entrepreneur can only understand how to make more entrepreneur. Understanding your ability and help you like a true partner, it’s a rare combination. Understanding someone’s ability is not only important but also believing in them help them like a true guide is more important. And that is the quality of Mrs. Vani Kola, which makes her different from everyone.
Vani was born and educated in Hyderabad in the state of Andhra Pradesh (now Telangana), India. She holds degrees in electrical engineering, having obtained a Bachelor of Science from Osmania University and a Master of Science from Arizona State University.
During her 22-year career in Silicon Valley, Vani was the founder and CEO of Certus Software, a leader in the financial compliance market. Prior to establishing Certus, Vani was the founder and chief executive officer of RightWorks, a successful e-procurement company that was acquired by ICG and subsequently by i2 Technologies.
Having been a successful entrepreneur in Silicon Valley for 22 years, Vani returned to India in 2006. Her initial venture into venture capital in India, in partnership with New Enterprise Associates (NEA), was Indo-US Advisors (IUVP) which in 2012 was rebranded as Kalaari Capital without the participation of NEA. Kalaari Capital began operations as a USD 150 million funds in September 2012. Under Vani’s leadership, the firm has grown to have USD 650 million assets under management today.
One of the most successful Venture capitalists in India, Vani is known as a visionary for identifying emerging markets. At Kalaari, she works with the first-time entrepreneur to build strong global companies, focused on technology, leveraging India’s domestic growth to create high growth enterprises. Vani has successfully led investments in e-commerce, mobile services, education, and healthcare. Many of her investments have now become very successful, validating her aptitude for picking the best young minds and mentoring them to build successful enterprises.Some of Kola’s notable venture capital successes include Snapdeal, Myntra, VIA, Apps Daily, Urban Ladder, Zivame, Rubique, Power2SME, and Bluestone.
Ratan Tata also took an advisory role at the firm. To create differentiated value for portfolio companies, Kalaari also brought on industry stalwarts such as Ravi Venkatesan and Ram Gupta.
As part of the first ever startup awards launched by Economic Times, Vani was awarded the Midas touch award for the best investor in 2015. She also won the NDTV Women of Worth award for leadership excellence in business and entrepreneurship
Vani ‘s experience as a founder of many successful companies and investments to her role as a mentor and enabler of startup companies in India. She serves on several company boards and speaks widely on entrepreneurship and leadership.