$60m facility broadens NZVIF horizons

CATHERINE HARRIS
Last updated 12:50 27/02/2013

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Two or three new venture capital funds are expected to get a kick-start from the government-funded New Zealand Venture Investment Fund (NZVIF) as a result of a new $60 million underwrite facility.

The underwrite was not a new injection of capital but gave the fund the ability to make new commitments, NZVIF said today.

Chief executive Franceska Banga said the underwrite was "timely and welcome", as it would allow the fund to progress partnerships such as its co-funding arrangement with Taiwanese counterpart, the National Development Fund.

"We expect to see two to three new funds beginning the capital raising process over the next three or four years which, if established, will help the flow of growth capital for start-up companies," she said.

Banga said the underwrite facility was unlikely to be called, but it provided greater flexibility in the way that NZVIF managed its money.

It meant NZVIF could make fresh commitments and then use cashflows from past investments to meet them, she said.

NZVIF has allocated $160m in venture capital and $40m to seed investments since it was established. The latest underwrite means the investment body can now invest up to $300m.

NZVIF supports eight venture capital funds and 14 angel group partnerships in 126 companies, including Orion Health, PowerbyProxi and BioVittoria.

The companies in its portfolio have gone on to collectively earn revenues of $1.25 billion, including export earnings of $945m.

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- BusinessDay.co.nz

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