UOB Venture sees $46m first close

The subsidiary of Singapore’s United Overseas Bank is targeting a total of $250m for its second ASEAN China Investment Fund.

Singapore-headquartered UOB Venture Management has raised $46 million for the first close of ASEAN China Investment Fund II. The fund is targeting commitments of $250 million, Mark Yeo, executive director of UOB Venture Management, told PEI Asia in an interview.

The fund is focused on making investments in China and the ASEAN grouping of ten Southeast Asian nations. Within the ASEAN region the fund will be focused on markets such as Indonesia, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam, Yeo said.

Eighty percent of the fund’s capital will be allocated to expansion or late stage investments and the remainder to early stage growth investments. The fund will invest in sectors including energy, consumer goods and services, industrials, healthcare, materials, technology and environmental technology.

The firm’s parent UOB Group has made an anchor investment of $30 million to the vehicle. Yeo said the firm is hoping to raise about $100 million for the second close of its fund, in three months' time, with commitments coming from returning limited partners from the firm’s first fund.

ASEAN China Investment Fund closed on $76 million in 2004. That fund is fully invested across 15 transactions. The firm has completely divested its stakes in eight companies, and partially exited a further investment. From its realised investments so far, the fund has generated a net IRR of 42 percent, Yeo added.

UOB Venture Management is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Singapore-based United Overseas Bank. The firm has offices in Singapore and Shanghai, and since its formation in 1992 has managed assets worth more than $280 million for UOB-related funds. The bank also has a private equity fund of funds business that makes commitments to Asian funds.