Chandu is a promoter of the Menterra Social Impact Fund, with over 30 years of experience in the consultancy, business information, and media sectors, both in Indian and global markets. He is also the co-founder of Scope e-Knowledge Center, a KPO company, which he grew to 1,000 people during his tenure. A member of Chennai Angels, Chandu is also an active contributor to The Indus Entrepreneurs (TIE) and National Entrepreneurship Network (NEN).
Polaris – Arun Jain
Arun Jain is the founder of Polaris Consulting, a leading software services business, and the chairman and MD of Intellect Design — a leader in the field of financial technology. To catalyze change at the grassroot level, Arun has also launched Mission Samriddhi — a social impact enterprise dedicated to the holistic development of villages.
For over 40 years, Vijay has not just been a serial social entrepreneur, but also a highly respected mentor to other entrepreneurs like himself. Over the course of his career, Vijay has:
- Founded India’s leading social enterprise ‘BASIX’ and NGO ‘Pradan’
- Been a member of several committees and boards, including:
- Raghuram Rajan Committee on Financial Sector Reforms
- C Rangarajan Committee on Financial Inclusion
- Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority
- Microfinance Development and Equity Fund
Today, Vijay guides Menterra’s team with his unparalleled ability to navigate the intersection of politics, economics, policy, social development, entrepreneurship, and innovation. Although retired now, he is still happiest while spending time with an entrepreneur.
In his long illustrious career, spanning over 30 years, Kanwaljit worked with companies such as Unilever, Intel, and Carlyle before becoming an angel and VC investor. He has an unparalleled understanding and insatiable interest for all things pertaining to the food, technology, and consumer industry. Some of the brands he has invested in include Paper Boat, ID Fresh, Epigamia, Hokey Pokey, Yogabar, Goodness Beverages, Licious, Mama Earth, Vahdam Teas, and Fable Street. Kanwaljit is also the founder of Fireside Ventures — an early-stage fund that invests in consumer-focused companies.
A B Chakravarthy
Principal and Agri Lead
Born into a farming family in Theni, Tamilnadu, Chakra is an agriculturist by heart and by inclination. With graduation and post-graduation in Agriculture, he took on the challenge of improving the yield and turning around the fortunes of his own coconut farm. His farming background and empathy for early-stage entrepreneurs make him the ideal business partner.
Could lithium ion batteries die out on us? What will be the battery source of tomorrow? A curious person by nature, Rohit is always on the lookout for socially impactful answers to tomorrow’s questions, making him a perfect fit for Menterra’s investment team.
Varun was a dedicated athlete as a child, whose interest in health and fitness has transformed into a keen eye for healthcare companies. He uses this eye for detail to assess both the business models of startups and overall consumer impact.
Vikas comes from a family of entrepreneurs, and had 3 food-tech innovation ideas to his name before joining college. To gain a foothold for himself in the business sector, Vikas switched from Engineering to Commerce at university level, and joined Menterra soon after. Today, he heads our finance department.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Meenakshi Ramesh is a promoter of the Menterra Social Impact Fund. In addition to being a key contributor at Pratham Education Foundation, India’s largest non-profit organization in the primary education space, Meenakshi has served as a board member of Schizophrenia Research Foundation (SCARF), since 2013. She has also worked with Credit Rating Information Services of India Limited (CRISIL), Mumbai, and has an MBA from IIM-Ahmedabad. As an angel investor, Meenakshi has funded several startups in the education, healthcare, agriculture, and logistics sectors.
A fellow promoter of the Menterra Social Impact Fund and alumni of IIM-Ahmedabad, Chandu Nair comes with over 30 years of experience in consultancy, business information, and media. He is also the co-founder of Scope e-Knowledge Center — a Knowledge Process Outsourcing company, that grew to 1,000 people during his tenure. A member of Chennai Angels, Chandu is also an active contributor to The Indus Entrepreneurs (TIE) and National Entrepreneurship Network (NEN).
Gautam Gode is the co-founder and managing director of Samara Capital, a private equity firm that invests in emerging Indian companies poised for rapid transformation. Previously a director with Citigroup’s Corporate and Investment Banking business, he has over a decade of experience in various leadership roles across geographies; primarily managing client relationships, origination, and investments. Gautam is a cum laude graduate from Princeton University and has an MBA from IIM-Ahmedabad.
We would also like to thank the following mentors, for sharing their invaluable time and expertise with us:
Villgro is India’s oldest and foremost social enterprise incubator, supporting innovators and social entrepreneurs in their initial stages of enterprise building. Since 2001, Villgro has incubated over 100 startups. Today, Villgro helps set up social incubators in India and abroad through partnerships with existing incubators and local entrepreneurs. In India, Villgro is supporting social incubation in IIM-Calcutta, IIT-Kanpur, Startup Oasis, and KIIT Bhubaneswar to fund more than 100 entrepreneurs in eight low-income states. It has also partnered with local entrepreneurs to build social incubators in Kenya, Philippines, and Vietnam.
Artha Venture Challenge
Artha Venture Challenge is an impact investment platform of the Singh Family Foundation. It focuses on funding early-stage social enterprises delivering sustainable impact for the bottom of the pyramid across different sectors.
At Menterra, we are looking for people who are passionate about impact, impatient with the status quo, and in search of innovative solutions in:
Senior positions open across our teams are:
(At this point, there are no open positions at Menterra. Please check back here for updates.)