ISIF and China’s CIC Capital announce €150m fund to focus on high-growth companies
The Ireland Strategic Investment Fund (ISIF) and the CIC Capital Corporation (CIC Capital) have announced a joint €150m fund.
The purpose of the fund is to invest in both high-growth Irish technology firms aiming to access the Chinese market, and Chinese firms seeking to use Ireland as a base for European operations.
Target sectors for the fund include hardware opportunities underpinning next generation products, such as Internet of Things (IoT) and mobile devices, and software applications such as big data, robotics and artificial intelligence (AI).
In a statement today, the ISIF said that the fund was a successor to the now fully-invested China Ireland Technology Growth Fund, announced in 2014 by ISIF’s predecessor, the National Pensions Reserve Fund (NPRF) and China Investment Corporation (CIC).
That $100m fund supported six Irish technology firms with expanding into China, as well as helping the firms develop relationships with Chinese customers.
Today these firms collectively employ around 350 people in Ireland, the ISIF said.
"We look forward to working with CIC Capital again on this new fund, which will offer a strong economic return to Ireland, as Chinese companies looking to gain access to Europe use Ireland as a base for their operations," Eugene O’Callaghan, director of the ISIF, said.
"The Irish companies that will benefit from the fund will gain from the opportunities to grow their business and product potential in the Chinese market," he continued.
Founded in 2007, CIC has registered capital of $200bn (€162bn). According to CIC, it was established as a vehicle to diversify China's foreign exchange holdings and seek maximum returns for its shareholder within an acceptable risk tolerance.
As with the previous fund, this fund will be co-managed by Dublin-based Atlantic Bridge and Beijing-based WestSummit Capital.
The fund was launched by An Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs & Trade, Simon Coveney T.D. and vice chairman and president of CIC, Tu Guangshao, at an event in Beijing as part of An Tanaiste’s visit to China and Hong Kong.
"The fund, fostering knowledge exchange in both directions, will be of mutual benefit, creating jobs in Ireland and increasing revenues for and the profiles of companies in Ireland’s innovative high tech sector," Minister Coveney said.
The launch of the fund was welcomed by the Minister for Finance, Paschal Donohoe T.D.