Singapore-based banker UOB-backed private equity arm UOB Venture Management has mopped up about $300 million for its Asean China Investment Fund IV (ACIF IV) , a vehicle that will invest in businesses in Southeast Asia and China, this portal has learnt.
The fund is said to be targeting to raise $500 million in total, much larger than its predecessor ACIF III that closed at $290 million.
The fund series, that had its first vehicle raised in 2005, focuses its operations in the ASEAN-China Growth Corridor, comprising the 10 member-states of ASEAN and the People’s Republic of China. It targets privately negotiated equity and equity related investments in small and medium sized companies.
A special focus is particularly on those businesses that can benefit from the rapidly expanding trade and investment ties between ASEAN and China and their respective extra-regional trading partners.
The debut Asean-China vehicle had raised $76 million receiving backing from Asian Development Bank, which had poured in $15 million into the fund. A follow-on fund, the ASEAN China Investment Fund II, hit its final close in 2010 at $150 million.
Among prominent previous backers of fund include International Finance Corporation, an anchor investor in the debut fund; Swiss government’s State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO), UOB Group itself and the China Development Bank (CDB).
Prominent investments from the Asean-China fund series include a $25-million funding in Vietnam’s largest privately-owned hydro-power company Bitexco Power Corporation in 2016.