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Indonesian bank OCBC NISP launches corporate venture capital fund

The firm has prepared USD 29 million for fintech, proptech, and logistics startups.

Photo by Dmitry Demidko on Unsplash

OCBC NISP Ventura, the corporate investment arm of the eponymous IDX-listed banking company, has obtained a license from Indonesia’s financial service authority (OJK) to operate its venture capital business beginning in January 2020, Daily Social reports.

Formerly known as Bank NISP, the firm is a subsidiary of Singapore-headquartered multinational banking and financial company OCBC, which acquired NISP in 2008.

The bank established its corporate venture capital arm in 2019. OCBC NISP head of strategy and innovation, Ka Jit The, told Daily Social that the bank’s Ventura subdivision aims to strengthen Indonesia’s digital ecosystem and drive transformation in the banking sector.

The venture capital fund has prepared IDR 400 billion (USD 29.1 million) to invest in tech startups in various sectors, including fintech, proptech, logistics, media, health tech, as well as edtech. Its team has already started analyzing startups for potential financing, according to Ka Jit. The firm is eyeing at least eight investments this year. In addition to capital injection, OCBC NISP Ventura will also form strategic partnerships with other companies and conduct programs like startup incubation to foster local tech developers.

Conventional banks in Indonesia are increasingly tapping into the region’s tech sector by establishing corporate VC firms.

In 2015, Bank Mandiri launched Indonesia’s first bank-led VC enterprise, called Mandiri Capital Indonesia. The move was followed by BCA two years later. Today, almost all of the biggest lenders in the country—like BRI, BNI, and BTN—have their own VC arms. These funds mostly invest in fintech to support the banks’ core business verticals.