Exclusive: BMYG acquires $1.4m stake in Australian platform Wholesale Investor

From left to right - Hein Vogel (Investec), Steve Torso (Wholesale Investor) and Eric Gao (BMYG)

Wealth management and financial media firm BMY Group (BMYG), which provides services to Chinese investors keen on an Australia exposure, has acquired a stake worth $1.4 million in private investment platform Wholesale Investor.

Wholesale Investor connects private, pre-IPO and listed companies with high net worth and professional investors.

The deal will see the combined investor base of the two add up to over 30,000. The investment by Melbourne-based BMYG has come within a year of UK-based asset management group Investec becoming a significant minority shareholder in Wholesale Investor.

BMY, as the third largest shareholder behind Investec, and founder Steve Torso, will work with Wholesale Investor to showcase Australian investment opportunities to potential HNIs and venture capital investors across Australia, China, Singapore and South Korea, a statement to DEALSTREETASIA said.

“We aim to be positioned as a gateway to the Asia-Pacific region for emerging companies, and this deal is a move towards that. This gives visibility to the deals for investors in Asia Pacific,” Wholesale Investor Managing Director Steve Torso told this portal in a phone interaction.

Talking further about the business climate and the startup ecosystem in Australia, Torso added that the country’s startups’ focus on technology and innovation has generated strong interest from Chinese investors.

Chinese investment in Australia touched its peak at AUD 15.4 billion in 2016, since the global financial crisis, according to a report from Sydney University and accounting firm KPMG. There were a record 103 deals signed between Chinese and Australian companies in 2016, the report added.

The investment from BMYG – founded in 2009 by Eric Gao and Julius Wei – comes as part of its venture capital fund, which is currently raising $50 million from high net worth Chinese investors to help Australian startups expand into China. As part of the investment, BMYG CEO Eric Gao has also joined the board of Wholesale Investor.

“We are seeing more and more Australian companies who are considering China as a market for their products and services. At the same time, we’re seeing a greater number of Chinese investors looking for opportunities in the Australian market,” Gao told this portal.

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