Kickstart Ventures, Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of Globe Telecom, was chosen by Ayala Corporation (AC) to manage its new US$150 million venture capital fund – the Ayala Corporation Technology Innovation Venture (ACTIVE) Fund.
The fund seeks to support startups pursuing innovations along key technology areas in data and analytics, machine learning, artificial intelligence, cloud computing, fintech, automation, real estate, retail, transport, energy, water, health and wellness, and food.
ACTIVE Fund is looking at a range of investments in Series A to Series C or early- to mid-growth stage across four key investment themes – A Frictionless Future, From Automation to Augmentation, Innovations in Real Estate, and A World of Plenty.
As sole manager of ACTIVE Fund, Kickstart is responsible for seeking companies that offer innovative, scalable, sustainable solutions for the seamless integration of digital and traditional channels such as On-Demand Services, IoT, FinTech, Blockchain, E-Commerce and Omni-Channel as well as the automation and augmentation applications for Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, Robotics, Big Data and Analytics, and Cloud Computing.
Other target companies are those that provide green and inclusive technologies such as Clean Energy / Energy Storage / Distributed Energy, Environmental Tech / Waste Management; and smart technologies for homes, buildings, communities, property management, retail tech, and similar use cases.
“While ACTIVE Fund will invest in tech companies not only in the Philippines but also abroad, our focus will be on systems and solutions, rather than pure technology,” said Minette Navarrete, President of Kickstart.
The investment themes reflect Kickstart’s perspective that technology and innovation are a means to positively influence the future that everyone wants to build rather than ends in themselves.
“By investing in solutions that can scale sustainably, and pairing equity with strategic support, we can put Ayala Corporation’s assets to work in a different way, forging a future that is frictionless, symbiotic, equitable, and boldly efficient,” she explained.
Kickstart was launched in 2012 to support the Philippine startup ecosystem and has so far made 39 investments in digital companies, supporting 83 founders across the Philippines, Indonesia, Singapore, Malaysia, United States, Canada, and Israel. ACTIVE Fund will be its third and largest fund to-date.
Kickstart investments include Toronto-based startup Wattpad, recently in the news for having inked significant content deals with Sony Pictures Television, Singapore’s Mediacorp, and the Philippines’ Anvil Publishing; Indonesia’s C88, which announced a $28M Series C round last year; and the Philippines’ Coins.ph, which was recently acquired by Indonesia’s Go-Jek.