$24 million equity fund set up in Nepal

- Post Report, Kathmandu
The fund will help Nepalis SMEs on their growth path by promoting international-local co-investments, enabling follow-up investments and exit

May 3, 2018-Investment management company, One to Watch, on Wednesday announced its partnership with venture capital and private equity firm True North Associates, building the largest private equity fund in the country for early stage growth companies.

The partners aim to accelerate access to finance for innovative companies in Nepal, the company said in a statement.  “One to Watch is once again leading the way forward in improving access to finance in Nepal,” it said.

In a move to realise a $24 million (20 million euro) SME fund, One to Watch has announced a collaboration with True North Associates. One to Watch is launching this fund—Nepal Impact Investment Community 2 (NIIC 2) after the successful implementation of its pioneer fund NIIC 1.

With this partnership, One to Watch aims to develop the venture capital and private equity market in Nepal through investments and business support to entrepreneurs. The collaboration will help Nepalis SMEs on their growth path by promoting international-local co-investments, enabling follow-up investments and exits, One to Watch said, adding that providing access to finance and enabling companies to grow is a vital requirement for the economic development of the country.

The partnership between One to Watch and True North Associates (TNA) brings together experience and expertise. TNA has acquired a substantial share in OTW, the SME portfolios of both companies will be combined. Suman Joshi, chairman of TNA, will take up the role of Managing Director at OTW. Joshi, who founded TNA in 2014 after a 24 year stint in the banking industry including 12 years at Standard Chartered Bank in Nepal, will focus on expanding the SME portfolio.

“The arrival of Joshi strengthens the team tremendously as the former banker brings in extensive investment management expertise, vast experience and a large network,” the company said in a press statement.

Joshi will share his responsibilities as managing director with OTW-founder Willem Grimminck, who remains the majority shareholder and stays on as Chairman and Managing Director.

Grimminck, a Dutch national who has been living in Kathmandu for six years, will focus increasingly on raising funds, fund management and business development. “We want to go beyond finance in our support to Nepalis companies,” says Grimminck. “By expanding our service and support to our portfolio companies we intend to accelerate their growth.”

Published: 03-05-2018 08:17

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