Dr. Apoorva Sharma is co-founder and president of Venture Catalysts – India’s first integrated incubator. Venture Catalysts has been ranked the world’s 7th Largest Incubator and Early Stage Investor by TechCrunch in 2019. In India, it has been successively ranked as the No. 1 early-stage player in 2018 and 2019. He is also a Board Member at TiE Mumbai.
He lives in Mumbai with his wife Parul, daughter Shristi and son Shreyas.
He is a regular speaker on many prestigious fora related to angel investments and incubation and had been visiting faculty at top entrepreneurship institutes such as SP Jain and EDII.
He is one of the founding fathers of the startup ecosystem in India. He has been instrumental in developing the startup ecosystem since early 2000. He has been a pioneer in establishing incubators in India. He has established over a dozen incubators and accelerators, incubation funds, and family office funds i.e. VentureNursery, Amity Innovation Incubator, Somaiya Incubator (RIDDLE), Mata Vaishno Devi University Incubator, and Indian Angel Network Incubator. He is the recipient of the prestigious Best Incubator Award given by the President of India, for outstanding performance of JSS Incubator.
Sharma holds an engineering degree from HBTI Kanpur, an M.B.A from Asia Pacific Institute of Management, Delhi, and a Diploma in Mentoring from HAAS Business School, Berkley, University of California. He is currently pursuing his Ph.D. in Innovation Management from Amity University.
He has a Ph.D. in Incubation from Amity University, Noida, and graduated in Engineering from HBTI, Kanpur. He also has a diploma in Mentor Studies from Haas School of Business, University of California Berkeley.
He is one of the top 10 angel investors in India, rated by VCCircle 2016. Over the last two decades; he has curated, incubated, and led seed investment of 100+ startups. OYO Rooms is the biggest success story of accelerators in India, followed by Beardo which is a recent acquisition by Marico Ltd. Both the startups were curated, mentored and seed sourced by Dr. Apoorva Sharma.
Today, he has become one of the most influential figures in the Indian startup funding space. His leadership & passion has motivated thousands of investors to take a plunge into startup investments.
In the past, he has been responsible for establishing JSS Technology Business Incubator, JSS SEED Fund (First Government-sponsored Seed Fund), Amity Capital Venture (Now $25m Education focused fund), and Amity Innovation Incubator. Some of the ventures mentored by him include Venera Technology (World Leader in Analyser), Apnacircle.com ($25m mergers with Viadeo), CircuitSutra Technology (Leader in System on Chip), Netika Solution (Biometric device venture employing the largest number of the deaf in India). He was also associated with Indian Venture Capital Association’s operation and research functions. He had spent close to a decade in IT Industry and has worked in an angel-funded start-up in Europe.