Sat, Nov 18, 2006 - Page 11 News List

Venture capital fund established to help local firms develop branding

CNA , WITH STAFF WRITER

A venture capital fund aimed at helping Taiwanese companies develop their own brands for the international market was launched yesterday in Taipei by Stan Shih (施振榮), founder of the Acer Group.

In a press conference called to introduce the new fund, Shih said that the fund, called Branding Taiwan Venture Capital, was the first of its kind in the world aimed at helping products bearing Taiwanese brands to venture into global markets.

The fund will help Taiwanese companies harness the nation's innovation and manufacturing advantages to develop and internationally market their own brands.

With a target size of NT$2 billion (US$60.71 million), Shih said half of the capital had already been raised by the fund's founders, including Shih's iD Soft Capital Group (智融集團), which contributed 10 percent, the Ministry of Economic Affairs, which chipped in 30 percent and the Taiwan External Trade Development Council (外貿協會), which put in 15 percent.

The venture capital will be operated by its private shareholders and the government's stake will be limited to below 50 percent, Shih said.

In order to qualify for investment from the fund, candidate firms do not have to be headquartered in Taiwan but should have their core management in the country. They should also be capable of developing overseas markets on their own rather than counting on the venture capital for overseas operations, Shih said.

Shih said the fund's management was seeking potential investment targets, with priority placed on the fields of digital technology, life and leisure products and other industries endemic to Taiwan.

He expressed hope that the capital would be able to help some companies grow into firms with annual revenue of more than US$100 million in the long term, in the process grooming international marketing talent for Taiwan-branded products.

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