Redwood City, CA – April 9, 2018 – GSVlabs, a global innovation platform that accelerates startups and connects corporations to exponential technologies and ideas, announced today the completion of a $7 million Series B financing round. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed. With the financing, GSVlabs also announced the appointment of Nikhil Sinha as Chief Executive Officer and GSV partner.
GSV stands for Global Silicon Valley and at the core of GSVlabs is a community of game-changing entrepreneurs focused on key innovation verticals, including Big Data & Artificial Intelligence, Education Technology (“EdTech”), Financial Technology (“FinTech”), Gaming & Entertainment, the Internet of Things (“IoT”), Digital Health, and others. The company’s flagship center in Silicon Valley is home to over 200 startups.
“I am thrilled to be joining the GSVlabs team at this exciting inflection point for the company,” said incoming CEO Nikhil Sinha. “GSVlabs is creating powerful network effects by connecting Silicon Valley to innovation centers around the world while connecting the world to Silicon Valley. We have the opportunity to build a special company.”
As the access point to a rapidly expanding startup ecosystem, over 25 Fortune 500 corporations – including Cisco, AT&T, Intel, Visa, and IBM – have partnered with GSVlabs to launch new initiatives, identify talent, and attack new markets. The company recently launched a center in Boston and it operates accelerator programs in Bangalore and Gurgaon (Delhi) in partnership with the Times of India, the largest media company in India. GSVlabs is targeting an expansion into 40 global innovation hubs over the next five years.
“Nikhil brings a unique blend of experience to GSVlabs spanning venture capital, as well as executive roles in both the corporate and academic sectors. We couldn’t be more excited to have him lead the platform,” said Michael Moe, GSVlabs Board member and Executive Chairman of GSV Capital. “We are also pleased to see GSVlabs add a high caliber investor group that not only supports the company’s vision, but also has the experience and connectivity to support its execution against a global opportunity.”
The GSVlabs financing round was led by a syndicate of private investors, including partners from HMC Capital, a leading Latin American asset manager with over $9 billion in assets under management.
New CEO Nikhil Sinha & Board Member Jules Coleman
Most recently, Nikhil Sinha served as the Chief Content Officer at Coursera, one of world’s leading higher education platforms backed by leading VC firms including GSV Capital, that reaches over 31 million learners with 2,600 courses from 165 premier global universities and corporations. He will continue his association with Coursera as a Senior Advisor to the CEO.
Nikhil also co-founded and served as the CEO of two technology companies – iDLX Technology Partners and Silverskills – which he led to successful strategic acquisitions. In the academic sector, Nikhil was the founding Vice Chancellor of Shiv Nadar University in India and also served as the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs at the University of Texas. Nikhil is currently Chairman of the Board of HCL Infosystems, Director Emeritus of the U.S.-India Business Council and a member of the Advisory Board of the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Pennsylvania.
Nikhil is joined by newly appointed GSVlabs Board member, Jules Coleman, the former Senior Vice Provost of New York University, where he launched the school’s campus in Abu Dhabi. Later, with former U.S. Navy Undersecretary Jerry Hutlin, Jules co-founded the Global Futures Group, a Smart Cities consultancy focused on applying emerging technology innovation. Jules is also a strategic Advisor to the Catalyst Fund, a global education innovation initiative founded by former U.K. Prime Minster Gordon Brown and former NYU President John Sexton on the Catalyst Fund, and to the Whittle School and Studios.