Japan’s SBI Holdings inks JV with China’s Ping An unit OneConnect

SBI OneConnect
Ping An sign board. Photo: Bloomberg

SBI Holdings, one of the most prominent venture capital and private equity firms in Japan, has formed a joint venture deal with Ping An subsidiary OneConnect, among the largest fintech SaaS platforms in China.

Under the terms of the agreement, SBI Group will hold 60 per cent in the joint venture while OneConnect and An Ke, another wholly owned subsidiary of Ping An Group, will jointly own 40 per cent.

In a statement, SBI Group said it will strive to promote the introduction of services offered by OneConnect toward domestic financial institutions through the joint venture company.

“We believe the cooperation between SBI and Ping An will also benefit the overseas expansion of Japanese regional financial institutions in China,” SBI said.

OneConnect serves 468 banks and 1,890 financial institutions in China by leveraging Ping An’s biometric identification, AI, blockchain, and cloud technologies.

As of earlier 2018, OneConnect has also started serving banks in Hong Kong and ASEAN countries.

In March, Bloomberg reported that Ping An, China’s largest insurer by market value, was starting preparations for an initial public offering of OneConnect that could raise as much as $3 billion.

OneConnect raised $650 million in a series A financing round earlier this year, according to Ping An’s 2017 annual report released earlier this month. The fundraising valued the company at $7.4 billion, the report shows.

Recently, SBI Holdings formed a joint venture fund with Malaysia-based private equity firm OSK Ventures with an initial commitment of $20 million.

The fund, named OSK-SBI Dynamic Growth Fund, will see both partners contribute equally. It will focus on investments in private startups in the ASEAN region and have a lifespan of five years.

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