We help Chinese firms diversify their shareholder base: Investcorp’s Zheng

We help Chinese firms diversify their shareholder base: Investcorp’s Zheng

Having a long-term track record of investments in North America and Europe in the mid-market private equity buyout segment, Investcorp forayed into Asia in 2017. Three years on, the Middle East-headquartered private capital manager’s assets under management (AUM) in Asia stands at about $3.2 billion, per its annual report.

“We have already committed over $1 billion to several private equity funds that we have set up ourselves and together with partners in China and Southeast Asia,” Duncan Zheng, Investcorp’s head of private equity China and Southeast Asia told DealStreetAsia in an interview.

The sectors Investcorp is betting big on are technology and consumer segments in Asia, apart from healthcare that has got a fresh lease of life amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.

While Investcorp does not still have any investments in Southeast Asia, “we’re quite active in our pipeline when it comes to opportunities in Southeast Asia,” said Zheng. “We want to focus on the more advanced economies such as Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, and not the frontier markets,” he added.

In China, Investcorp has forged a slew of partnerships. While it launched China Everbright New Economy Fund in 2018 in collaboration with China Everbright to invest in the next wave of technology leaders in the country, in 2019 Investcorp tied up with state-owned China Resources Holdings to take over whole food retailer City’Super in Hong Kong and Shanghai.

Investcorp’s portfolio companies in China include Meituan, the e-commerce platform that operates mobile apps including Meituan, Dianping, Meituan Waimai, and Mobike, among others.

In September 2020, Investcorp launched a new platform to invest in Chinese healthcare companies. As part of this initiative, Investcorp acquired minority equity stakes in Lu Daopei Medical Group and WeDoctor.

Edited excerpts of the interview with Investcorp’s Zheng:

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