Arjun Gupta, Indian American founder and chief believer at TeleSoft Partners, an Aspen, Colorado, -based special situations venture capital firm, has been appointed chair of a newly established Investment Capital Advisory Committee.
The 14-member committee will advise the US Small Business Administration (SBA) in the development of a more inclusive and accessible ecosystem for small businesses nationwide.
Consisting of members with diverse perspectives, experiences, and occupational backgrounds in and related to the US private investment industry, the committee has been formed to increase small businesses and startups’ access to investment capital, according to an SBA press release.
“The launch of SBA’s inaugural Investment Capital Advisory Committee with its distinguished membership will serve as a critical resource to the Biden-Harris Administration as we strengthen our policies and programs to foster a more inclusive investment ecosystem,” said SBA Administrator Isabella Casillas Guzman.
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“ICAC’s insights and recommendations will help the SBA expand access to investment capital, increase public awareness of SBA resources, and identify and fill capital gaps facing small businesses and the fund managers seeking to support them.”
The committee’s main objective is to promote, expand, and strengthen the ecosystem of private funds financing US small businesses and startups, to fund entrepreneurs and small business owners from traditionally underserved communities.
Gupta, a naturalized US citizen, founded TeleSoft Partners in 1996. TeleSoft was licensed by SBA for two SBICs covering 1997-2012. Gupta invests directly in portfolio companies and fund-of-funds investments, according to his official profile.
Over the last 25 years, he has invested directly or indirectly in over 250+ private technology companies, resulting in 150+ acquisitions and IPOs (including 60+ unicorns).
Over this period, Gupta raised cumulative capital commitments of over $1+ billion. He was on the Forbes Midas List of the Top 100 Venture Capital Investors in 2006, 2007, 2008, and 2009.
Earlier in his career, Gupta was a strategy consultant for high-tech clients with McKinsey & Company and a software engineer and product specialist for Tektronix, Inc.
In 2001, Gupta launched a family foundation. The foundation or Arjun personally has supported numerous non-profit projects.
Gupta is a passionate outdoorsman. He was a Liaison Officer with the Indian Mountaineering Foundation and has climbed with six Himalayan expeditions to peaks over ~20,000 feet.
He was a member of the 100th Anniversary Ski Expeditions to the North Pole and to the South Pole. Arjun was elected a Fellow of the Explorer’s Club (USA); a Fellow of the Royal Geographic Society (UK), and FAO of the UN appointed Arjun a Mountain Partnership Goodwill Ambassador.
Gupta received his MBA from Stanford University, MS and BS (Phi Beta Kappa) in Computer Science from Washington State University, and BA (Honors) in Economics from St Stephen’s College (India).
Gupta is an Advanced Leadership Fellow (ALI) from Harvard University and a Henry Crown Fellow and Trustee of the Aspen Institute. He is a co-founder and former co-chair of YPO Aspen. Gupta is a naturalized US citizen and lives in Colorado.