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BASF gains access to technologies of Japanese startup companies
BASF Venture Capital GmbH, Ludwigshafen, Germany, has invested in the venture capital FINTECH GIMV Fund L.P. (FGF), which focuses on Japan-based high-tech startup companies. The main areas involved are life sciences, alternative energy generation and storage, material sciences, and information and communications technology. The bulk of the startups are spin-offs from Japanese universities and industrial corporations.
FGF has raised $55 million (about €38 million) in its first closing, with BASF Venture Capital contributing $2 million (about €1.4 million). Other investors include the Japanese investment bank FinTech Global Incorporated, Belgium's largest capital investment company GIMV, and the Development Bank of Japan.
The move allows BASF to benefit from FGF's excellent connections in the Japanese financial and venture capital markets. The investment also gives BASF access to innovative technologies in Japan that support the company's five growth clusters: energy management, raw material change, nanotechnology, plant biotechnology and white (industrial) biotechnology.
"Japan is a global front runner in megatrend technologies. Our investment in FGF gives us a first-class view of Japanese technologies at an early stage of development and increases our access to Japanese startups. FGF's experienced management is an additional benefit" said Dr. Knut Eichler, investment manager at BASF East Asia Regional Headquarter Ltd.
About FINTECH GIMV Fund
FINTECH GIMV FUND (FGF) is a unique venture capital fund that focuses on information and communication technology as well as life sciences. It offers attractive opportunities for Japanese startups attempting to deploy global resources, for Japanese companies looking for cross-border market opportunities, as well as for European and U.S. technology companies seeking business development opportunities in Japan. FGF is incorporated under the laws of Jersey, Channel Islands, and plans to invest an average of $3million to $7million per company in 20 to 30 companies in the coming ten years / by 2017.
About BASF Venture Capital GmbH
BASF Venture Capital GmbH was established in 2001 as a wholly owned subsidiary of BASF Future Business GmbH, Ludwigshafen, Germany, and participates in startup companies and funds. In doing so, it focuses on companies with innovative business models and technologies in which chemistry is an important key to success. This includes above all companies that are active in BASF AG’s five growth clusters: energy management, raw material change, nanotechnology plant biotechnology and white (industrial) biotechnology. These cross-sectional technologies are outside the realm of the classical disciplines and can only be brought to fruition by interdisciplinary and international cooperation. Between 2006 and 2008, a total of €920 million will be allocated for the research activities pursued within the five growth clusters.
BASF is the world’s leading chemical company: The Chemical Company. Its portfolio ranges from chemicals, plastics, performance products, agricultural products and fine chemicals to crude oil and natural gas. As a reliable partner to virtually all industries, BASF’s high-value products and intelligent system solutions help its customers to be more successful. BASF develops new technologies and uses them to meet the challenges of the future and open up additional market opportunities. It combines economic success with environmental protection and social responsibility, thus contributing to a better future. BASF has approximately 95,000 employees and posted sales of €52.6 billion in 2006. BASF shares are traded on the stock exchanges in Frankfurt (BAS), London (BFA) and Zurich (AN).
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