Ajinkya Rahane don’s investor’s hat- A sportsperson starts living a focused life at an early age. It’s only about playing, but it also gives them an opportunity to meet new people, travel, and hear about exciting businesses that people started at a very small level. Indian cricket team’s vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane, a cricketer by profession, has also invested in two startups last year.
The 32-year-old had invested in Mahle-backed MeraKisan– an agri-tech startup and Hudle– a digital platform for sports lovers. While MeraKisan supplies farming-related goods to farmers through retail stores and e-commerce platforms, Hudle is used to find out any upcoming sports event and book a sporting venue.
In a recent interview to Moneycontrol, Rahane was asked why he decided to become an investor. The cricketer replied that, “we get into a focused lifestyle at a very young age and most of our focus is on playing cricket continuously.”
“During the time I played cricket, I got a chance to meet new people, travel and hear about many interesting businesses that people have started from very small levels.”
The standing captain for India in the recently concluded Border-Gavaskar Trophy added that there is more to it. Planning for life after cricket is also important. That’s why he wanted to partner with an interesting venture at an early stage that can become a successful business in the future.
He added that he had a conversation with his business partner Akhil Ranade before deciding that he should start looking for such exciting opportunities to become a partner in some specific work.
Although Rahane did not reveal how many shares he has bought at these two startups, he did explain his investment mantra. “Before investing in any venture, my first quest is whether I belong to the core business of that company and how I can contribute to that business. It is important for me to meet the company’s founders and get to know their vision for the company and their plans for what I can do as their brand ambassador,” he said as quoted by moneycontrol.com.
Why did they decide to invest in these two firms? Rahane said that the investment in MeraKisan was due to his earlier inclination towards agriculture. He wanted to join a company that can be a sustainable and tall player in the sector.
Speaking about Hudle, Rahane said that he loves sports other than cricket, but it is not easy to find the right place to play these games. He said that he plays badminton, table tennis, and football with his friends whenever he finds time. The middle-order batsman thinks everyone should play some sport and what Hudle does is that it makes it easier for non-professional amateur athletes and sports enthusiasts to find and book a place to play the game.
After MeraKisan and Hudle, Rahane is now looking at new categories. He said that there are some other areas that we have discussed, such as gaming, education, health technology, children’s nutrition and e-sports. He is looking for more opportunities in agriculture, but sports have a special place in his investment portfolio.