The launch of an innovation fund that will provide millions to digital start-ups plus a EURO 500,000 research fund that will promote the study of global PE investment are both expected to have long-term implications across China, France and the United States. Both launches took place today at the Beijing Campus of China Europe International Business School (CEIBS).
Cathay Capital will donate EURO 500,000 to CEIBS to establish the Cathay Global PE Research Fund, which aims to promote the study of trends, cases and risk-reward models of global PE investment, as well as innovation in the industry, organisational structure and management patterns in the new economic environment.
“We deeply appreciate the continuous support of Cathay Capital, a company led by our alumnus Cai Mingpo,” said CEIBS Vice President and Dean Ding Yuan during today’s donation ceremony for the fund. “In today’s rapidly changing and challenging world, the study of PE and related areas urgently needs an emerging force to help guide it. The establishment of the Cathay Global PE Research Fund will enhance CEIBS’ efforts to promote knowledge creation and dissemination by linking East and West in teaching, research, and business practices. We also have great faith in the development prospects of the innovation fund and believe it will create a healthy environment for innovative start-ups to grow.”
The research fund will complement Cathay Capital’s Sino French Innovation Fund which was also launched at CEIBS Beijing campus today. Supported by CDB Capital and Bpifrance, the innovation fund is a new cross-border investment vehicle active across France, China and the United States. It is dedicated to venture capital financing for innovative start-ups. It will target investment in digital start-ups linked to the Internet, including mobile, big data, the Internet of Things smart transportation, connected cars, advertising, digital marketing, software, cloud technologies, security, gaming, media, social networks and B to B applications. It will invest in a total of 12 to 18 innovative start-ups and the investment amount in each firm will range between EURO 5 to 25 million. As one of the new investors who have confirmed their contribution, Valeo, a leading automotive supplier, will partner with Cathay to reinforce its access to innovative start-ups in the smart transportation and connected car applications.
Reactions to the fund launch:
Fan Haibin, President of China Development Bank: “In light of the existing PE cooperation between China and France, and the vision of supporting the development of innovation firms, we are thrilled to enter into collaboration for the third time with Bpifrance and Cathay to launch this fund. It heralds an important step in the Sino-French partnership in financial investment; it will accelerate the international growth of targeted firms and help them have significant breakthroughs in cross-border cooperation.”
Nicolas Dufourcq, Chairman of Bpifrance: “We are pleased to celebrate the launch of the new fund with CDB and Cathay. Given that French companies have an urgent need to develop their activities across as wide a market as possible, this potential is something offered by the United States, but also today by China, and we have huge confidence in the investment prospects of the fund. On the back of the successful results of the Sino French SME Fund and Midcap Fund, we are confident that the new vehicle can continue the dynamic of creating economic growth and employment in today’s economy.”
Jacques Aschenbroich, CEO of Valeo: “Our cooperation with Cathay will bring a key new stone to our open innovation policy, which we have conducted over numerous years. As a leader in driving assistance systems, Valeo is deeply committed in providing the technologies for cars that will be more autonomous, connected and intuitive. This partnership with Cathay will reinforce our ability to cooperate with innovative startups on three essential geographies for the automotive market, in China, in Europe and in the United States, in a context where the automobile is becoming more and more digital and connected.”
Cai Mingpo, President of Cathay Capital Private Equity: “We are delighted to witness the launch ceremony of this innovation fund with our partners Bpifrance and CDB Capital and we wish to thank them for their continued support. By leveraging our 8-year cross-border experience and the sheer depth and breadth of our network across China, Europe and the United States, we will fully support the global deployment of this fund. In the new era of the Internet economy, innovation has a huge impact on economies and business models, and Cathay has been preparing an ‘Innovation vehicle’ to meet the needs of this new era. The Cathay Capital team will be further strengthened in the context of this fund launch, mainly by setting up a dedicated line of activity in order to better serve our entrepreneurs and fully deserve the confidence and trust of our investors.”