Myanmar Private Equity and Venture Capital Association (MPE&VCA) received substantial funding from CDC Group, an institution wholly owned by the UK government, during its formation and launch.
The Myanmar Private Equity and Venture Capital Association (MPE&VCA), incorporated in May 2019 and comprising 11 members including Seed Myanmar, Insitor Management, Emerging Markets Investment Advisers, Daiwa PI Partners, Delta Capital, Myanmar Strategic Holdings, YGA Capital, Anthem Asia, Myanmar Investments International and Yangon Capital Partners, has received substantial funding from CDC Group, which is a development finance institution wholly owned by the UK government. The MPE&VCA was established with the aim of bolstering investment activity in the frontier markets of Southeast Asia, with a particular focus here on Myanmar’s market.
Josephine Price, inaugural chairperson at MPE&VCA and the co-founder of Anthem Asia, said: “This launch is an important event for the financial services and investment community in Yangon and Myanmar. It marks a milestone in the development of the Myanmar economy since the country started opening up in 2012.”
Myanmar has been gradually opening up its market and economy to outside investors and this is reflected in the US$200 million in investment capital that is currently flowing around the country seeking opportunities and uncovered potential. Still, because of its relatively young and nascent economy that is still in the early developmental stages, there is a need to advance the understanding, impact and role of venture capital and private equity in local economic development among the local businesses and organizations. Therefore the Myanmar Private Equity and Venture Capital Association will play a crucial role in connecting the different stakeholders in the Myanmar market together to provide a more substantial impact. Towards this end the MPE&VCA will not only gather in members from the venture capital and private equity sectors, but also rope in those from investment firms as well as professional service providers.
Price added:“Our early focus will include basic research, helping regional and international investment groups understand more about Myanmar, and being a voice for institutional investors with the Myanmar authorities.”
Fundraising activities in the frontier markets of Southeast Asia like Myanmar’s has been gradually ramping up, in particular with limited partners (LPs) who are mostly betting big on the potential of the region. They have been on a tear recently looking to gear up investments in private equity and venture capital funds. Myanmar, for instance, has recently seen a series of private equity and venture capital funds since the opening up of its economy just a few years ago in 2012. Some of these are Delta Capital, a fund manager which has raised around US$120 million via two investment vehicles, and Ascent Myanmar Growth Fund which is currently setting its eyes on a US$100 million target.
Joshua Morris, chief executive officer of Emerging Markets Investment Advisers, further commented that Southeast Asia’s frontier markets like Myanmar’s “are ready for investment.” If there ever was a great time to start investing in these frontier markets, now would be the time.