Friday 24 November 2017

€74m fund with China to invest in tech firms

Eamon Gilmore and Raymond Yang: at the launch of the
new China-Ireland fund. Photo: Colm Mahady/Fennells
Eamon Gilmore and Raymond Yang: at the launch of the new China-Ireland fund. Photo: Colm Mahady/Fennells
Donal O'Donovan

Donal O'Donovan

The Irish and Chinese governments have teamed up to create a $100m (€74m) fund to invest in stakes in technology business.

The China Ireland Technology Growth Capital Fund is an equal partnership between the National Pension Reserve Fund (NPRF) here and the Chinese state fund China Investment Corporation (CIC).

Speaking at the launch, Finance Minister Michael Noonan said legislation to direct the remaining €6.8bn in the NPRF into job-supporting investments at Ireland was a priority.

The NPRF's Eugene O'Callaghan said the agency had already begun selling off assets abroad in anticipation of having cash available to invest here.

The new China-Ireland fund has been structured to buy minority stakes in Irish and Chinese technology companies involved in trade between the two countries.

While the two government funds are paying into the new venture, it will be managed by venture capital firms WestSummit Capital, based in Beijing, and Atlantic Bridge, which is based here.

They have established SummitBridgeCapital to oversee the new fund, and launched a new website www.SummitBridgeCapital.com yesterday.

Mr Noonan said the new fund was part of a wider effort to reduce the reliance of Irish business on traditional bank finance.

WestSummit Capital's Raymond Yang said the fund would back Irish technology companies that had a substantial presence or strategic interest in China, and Chinese technology companies with a presence or strategic interest here.

Irish Independent

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