Iris Capital Partners launches $37.8 Million Venture Debt Fund for Malaysia

The fund focuses to finance high-impact Malaysian and Southeast Asian startups


Teckwai Saw

21 Dec, 2021

Iris Capital Partners launches $37.8 Million Venture Debt Fund for Malaysia | BEAMSTART News

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Iris Capital Partners has launched a $37.8 million (RM160 million) venture debt fund, the Iris Fund, which aims to provide a non-dilutive financing option to propel Malaysian and Southeast Asian startups.

"The fund is co-managed by Hanwha Asset Mangement and the fund size of RM160 million is contributed by Penjana Kapital, owned by Malaysia's finance ministry, and other institutional and high-net-worth investors," Iris mentioned in a statement.

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Kimo Kim and Yuntek Jung are appointed as partners, with both individuals being experienced fund managers at Hanwha Asset Management.

Under the Malaysian finance ministry's Dana Penjana Nasional (DPN) programme, Iris Capital is one of eight venture capital (VC) fund managers selected.

Dana Penjana Nasional is a fund-matching programme initiated by the Malaysian government directed to propel the startup scene.

The advantages of venture debt funds include more accessible financing options for early-stage startups with validated business models and clear market growth opportunities, in addition to minimising shareholding dilution, according to Iris Capital.

Iris has already started with its first investment in Singapore-based Growthwell Group, an alternative meat and seafood provider for food & beverage businesses focusing in Southeast Asia.

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Malaysia's startup scene has been looking bleak for quite a while compared to neighbouring countries, Singapore and Indonesia, due to its political instability and a taxing economic situation.

This is definitely good news for the growth of Malaysia’s economy in attracting Hanwha to invest more in Malaysian startups.

Despite this being the South Korean group’s first venture debt partnership in Malaysia, "This will be the first of many partnerships with Iris Capital Partners," Kimo Kim said.




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