InnoVen Capital inks S-E Asia venture debt deals

InnoVen Capital, a joint venture between Temasek Holdings and United Overseas Bank (UOB), has signed its first two venture debt financing agreements with e-commerce start-ups in Malaysia and Thailand, it said yesterday.

Venture capital deals usually mean an entrepreneur sells off a stake in the start-up while venture debt involves lending money in return for interest payments and the potential to take a stake later on.

InnoVen is providing a total of US$5 million (S$6.8 million) in loans to Malaysia's KFit Holdings, an e-commerce health and fitness company, and Thailand's Pomelo Fashion to develop their businesses in the region.

InnoVen expects to close another 18 venture debt deals across South-east Asia, India and China in the next six months, with at least six from Singapore.

It also plans to set up an office in China to look at deals there by the end of this year.

UOB and Temasek have each committed up to US$100 million in paid-up capital to InnoVen since it was set up last year, with the aim of providing high-growth and innovative Asian start-ups with up to US$500 million in venture debt loans over the next five years.

Marissa Lee

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 22, 2016, with the headline 'InnoVen Capital inks S-E Asia venture debt deals'. Print Edition | Subscribe