E57: Mohanjit Jolly (Co-Founder & Partner, Iron Pillar Fund)

 
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Mohanjit Jolly is the Co-founder and Partner at Iron Pillar Fund (IPF). IPF provides growth capital to founders building from India for the world.

Mohanjit has been working with and investing in technology start-ups in the US and India for over 20 years. He is one of a few VCs who has been on the ground as a partner in India and Silicon Valley. Mohanjit has led Iron Pillar’s investments in Sibros, Jiffy, Uniphore, Vyome, Ushur and CoreStack.

Before co-founding Iron Pillar, Mohanjit served as a Partner at Draper Fisher Jurvetson for 9 years, establishing their India operations, overseeing the India venture portfolio and coordinating business development efforts with Fortune 500 companies for DFJ’s global portfolio. Prior to this, he was a Partner at Garage Technology Ventures, a Silicon Valley seed stage VC firm. His early years in California and Boston saw him help launch ViaSpace, a technology incubator in conjunction with Caltech and JPL and Intel Play, a joint venture between Mattel and Intel. He also worked at Itek Optical Systems, a manufacturer of high-resolution reconnaissance systems.

Mohanjit serves on the Boards of The Unreasonable Group and The SETI Institute.

Mohanjit earned his MBA from The Anderson School at UCLA and a B.S. and M.S. in Aeronautics and Astronautics from The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).

In this episode, we will cover:

1. Learnings from running a fund that operates cross-border – in the US and India (3:13)

2. How does Mohanjit view the next 10 years of venture and the ecosystem in India (7:58)

3. How did Iron Pillar build its growth and support network around its fund? (15:18)

4. Examples of leveraging growth partners 24:01)

5. How should investors build relationships with founders to advocate for transparency beyond the traditional sense? (33:20)

6. What convinced Mohanjit that Anand was the right partner to start the fund with? (43:26)

7. How does Iron Pillar think about LP construction (51:05)

8. What are Mohanjit’s insecurities as an investor (57:43)

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