ADB formally authorized the ADB Ventures platform in late January, and earlier this month we were proud to achieve the first close of our inaugural investment fund. We raised US$ 50 million, exceeding our target. After a year and a half of project preparation, we are finally ready to start making investments.
ADB Ventures is excited to be supported by Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland, the Clean Technology Fund, the Nordic Development Fund, and the Republic of Korea’s Ministry of Economy and Finance, which contributed to Investment Fund 1.
ADB Director General for Private Sector Operations Mike Barrow recently welcomed ADB Ventures’ investors, commenting: “These commitments by some of the world’s most forward-thinking development funders will be catalytic in achieving ADB’s vision to convene one of the region’s largest impact venture platforms.”
Saumya Kailasapathy, who leads ADB Ventures’ fundraising, urges potential investors to get in touch.
Our team spent a year and a half setting up our deal sourcing, screening, and due diligence processes before we commenced operations. Our Manila-based investments team, led by Daniel Hersson, is fully staffed and already evaluating deals.
Unfortunately, the COVID-19 pandemic has forced many of the companies we would like to support to delay their fundraising, which could push some Q3 2020 investments into the fourth quarter or later.
As we all adapt to the challenges brought by COVID-19, ADB has pledged its full effort this year to helping the Asia Pacific recover from the pandemic. On 13 April, ADB announced that it was tripling its initial COVID-19 response package to US$ 20 billion. ADB President Masatsugu Asakawa remarked that the Bank’s assistance package would be delivered quickly to “the governments and the private sector in our developing member countries to help them address the urgent challenges in tackling the pandemic and economic downturn.”
ADB Ventures will be part of this effort. We are actively screening COVID-19-related solutions referred to us by co-investors and partners such as TusStar, Plug and Play, D3 Jubilee, and Nordic Innovation House. Working with our sovereign ADB colleagues, ADB Ventures will explore how these technologies can be part of an integrated package to help Developing Member Countries address and recover from this pandemic while building resilience to future health crises.
Keep an eye on our website and social media channels for updates as we work on this – and if you know of any technologies relevant to our efforts, please bring them to our attention by using this form.
In the meantime, we’re intensifying our search for highly scalable impact technology solutions through our ADB Ventures Labs.
Labs assess commercial demand for impact-related technology in particular sectors, then source and match solutions from all around in the world.
We have several Labs in progress, coordinated by team member Jason Lusk:
• The Building Energy Challenge, in partnership with New Energy Nexus, is matching the commercial real estate sector’s demand for energy efficiency technologies to technology innovators with energy efficiency solutions that include energy management and smart building solutions.
• Imagine H2O Asia, in partnership with Imagine H2O and Enterprise Singapore, is matching ADB client utilities’ demand for water technologies to innovation from all over the world.
• Travel Lab Asia, in partnership with the Pacific-Asia Travel Association and Plug and Play, is matching the hospitality sector’s demand for clean technologies to energy, water, and circular economy and waste management solutions.
• Future Food Asia Awards 2020, in partnership with ID Capital, is identifying agritech and food security solutions well suited to ADB developing member countries.
In addition, we devoted the second half of 2019 to the Fintech Challenge Vietnam, in which ADB Ventures partnered with the State Bank of Vietnam and several commercial banks to uncover opportunities to scale financial inclusion, particularly for women business owners. We are now working with partners to operate the Fintech Challenge Myanmar.
Stay tuned for more news about our continuing evolution! For inquiries about supporting ADB Ventures or exploring investment opportunities with us, please contact us here.
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