Thai lender Kasikorn Bank launches US$30 million Beacon VC fund to invest in fintech

Thu Jun 8, 2017 - 7:10am GMT+0000
Thai lender Kasikorn Bank launches US$30 million Beacon VC fund to invest in fintech

Kasikorn Bank (KBank) on Wednesday has established a US$30 million fintech fund to invest in startups across Southeast Asia as well as Europe and China.

The new fund is known as the Beacon Venture Capital and aims to undertake in three to five deals per year, with investments ranging from US$500,000 to US$3 million.

The fund’s managing director Thanapong Na Ranong said that Beacon will provide the firm a first-mover advantage on global tech as it focuses on financial innovations that align with KBank strategies.

In fact, Beacon has already made its first investment in a Bangkok-based SME cloud accounting firm startup FlowAccount, along with three other investors on board.

Besides, the bank also intends to invest in third-party venture capital funds, having already backed Dymon Asia, a Singapore-headquartered fintech fund aiming for a US$50 million final close.

“We have committed to two more deals with the outlays of more than 200 million baht,” Ranong said.

In another development, Kbank has also recently set up the Kasikorn Business-Technology Group (KBTG) to focus on innovation creation in cooperation with its technology partners to offer new innovative services to its 14.2 million customers.

“Beacon VC and KBTG will work as a digital partnership. Beacon VC’s role is an investor while KBTG’s role is that of an inventor. The Next Building Block concept will help promote startups to grow in a stable manner and bring a long-term sustainability to Kbank,” Kattiya said.

Last year, the Bank of Thailand gave an approval to KTBG to test a new form of financial service in Regulatory Sandbox. Based on a blockchain technology, the service aims to enable developers working on lending, payment, and money-transfer services and products to experiment for up to a year.