IMC Group’s investment arm in Singapore, Heritas Capital, is reportedly set to complete the initial close of its Heritas Venture Fund II (HVF II). The private equity firm expects to secure a $30 million new venture fund within the first semester of 2021.

Launched in December 2020, HVF II was created as an “impact investing” venture fund aimed at helping early-stage tech startups. The fund particularly focuses on new but promising companies in the healthcare, food, and education sectors, which are deemed to be capable of delivering financial returns and offering social and environmental benefits at the same time.

The firm says that it intends to use the $30 million new venture fund to support a minimum of 10 and a maximum of 15 startups. It will be used to provide seed and Series A funding stages for companies in various countries throughout Asia.

Chik Wai Chiew, Chief Executive Officer and Executive Director of Heritas Capital, said that the company is planning to provide up to $3 million in select startups to obtain a “significant minority stake” in these companies. HVF II’s successful fund sourcing is viewed as a nod to the growing interest in innovative products and services in the fields of healthy living, smart platforms, and education.

“We are seeing a strong pipeline of attractive deal flows, which are also impactful in terms of enhancing access to affordable quality healthcare and education, and contributing to sustainable growth.” Chik Wai Chiew says.

Notably, Heritas Capital was a lead investor in a Series A+ round for Cakap. The said funding round was also participated by Strategy Year Holdings, Investidea Ventures, and Prasetia Dwidharma. Cakap is an online language learning platform based in Indonesia.

The first iteration of the Heritas Venture Fund (HVF) was launched in 2017. It provided financial backing to 10 startups in the healthcare industry including Holmusk, a global digital health and data analytics company; Hummingbird Bioscience, an innovative therapeutics developer; and Alchemy Foodtech, the developer of the “healthy carb” Alchemy Fibre.

After HVF II, Heritas Capital plans to pursue HVF III, with a more ambitious target venture fund of $150 million. The third HVF will also target companies in the same sectors (healthcare, education, and food) but will focus on growth stage startups. HVF III will reportedly offer investments in the $5 million to $20 million range.

HVF III will adopt the same “impact investment” approach all HVFs were built upon. Startups that seek funding will be selected based on assessments that go beyond financial metrics. Their benefits to society and the environment will be factored in.

Chik Wai Chiew says that one of the key indicators they are examining is the number of beneficiaries a startup can serve. Digital health companies, for instance, are evaluated by the number of active users that benefit from their products and services as well as their potential reach if they were to expand.

Founded in 1997, Heritas Capital is one of Singapore’s foremost venture capital investment firms that target fast-growing companies in the healthcare and education industries. Its growing investment portfolio includes Strand Life Science in India, Timberland Medical Centre in Malaysia, Q&M Dental and CXA Group in Singapore, and Gorry Holdings in Indonesia.

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