World Bank’s IFC investment firm invests $2M in Southeast Asian fund SeedPlus



SeedPlus, the early stage investment firm launched by Singapore-based VC firm Jungle Ventures last year, has snagged a strategic investment from IFC, the investment and asset management firm within the World Bank Group.

IFC confirmed today that it has invested $2 million in the SeedPlus fund, the size of which has not been disclosed. The firm is also an LP with Jungle Ventures, which operates a $100 million fund principally targeted at  Series A deals, but now it joining other investors like Accel to take a part of SeedPlus, which, as the name suggests, is focused on stage seed deals in Southeast Asia.

The firm takes an operational approach to its portfolio, and its three partners count time spent employed at tech giants like Yahoo, Evernote and Spotify. Its portfolio includes B2B repairs platform Moglix, Mimetic.ai, which manages an AI assistant platform, and mobile security firm AppKnox.

“The SeedPlus investment aligns with IFC’s Venture Capital group’s strategy to invest in innovative technology companies across emerging markets. Today, there are several fast-evolving, transformative technologies disrupting key industry sectors, enabling entrepreneurship and innovation to flourish in emerging markets, particularly in Southeast Asia, which we see as a growing market for us this year,” IFC’s head of Asia investments Pravan Malhotra said in a statement.

“IFC is a strong investor which has a huge history of supporting entrepreneurism in Asia and a footprint across the global,” Tiang Lim Foo, operating partner at SeedPlus, told TechCrunch in an interview.

“Ultimately we want to curate and carefully select our investor base, that goes back to our focus to support our startups beyond Singapore and Southeast Asia,” Foo, who formerly headed Evernote’s business in Asia, added.

He pointed out that relationships with Accel and IFC can open doors and give portfolio companies links to help raise money further down the line, but there’s no formal obligation or agreement limiting them to raising funding from SeedPlus LPs.

Featured Image: Francois De Heel/Photolibrary/Getty Images



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