- Monday, 28 May 2007 | Charlie Corbett
Six institutional investors have contributed to the fund, including Industry Funds Management (IFM) and superannuation fund Sunsuper.
The fund also announced the launch of its funds management operation, Southern Cross Venture Partners.
The firm will be based in Sydney and focus on investing in early-stage technology companies across a range of sectors, including electronics, information technology, telecommunications, nanotechnology, clean energy and defence technology.
It will be run by three Australian-based directors, Bob Christiansen, Bill Bartee and Gareth Dando.
Christiansen, who is Southern Cross Venture Partners managing director, said the fund had reached a size where the focus could move from capital raising to investment.
"Lack of scale has historically been a problem for early-stage funds in Australia and New Zealand, particularly when they have had to step up to investing in later rounds beside larger international venture capital funds," he said.
"With a fund of this size, we can now follow our winners through the later investment rounds and also be able to support other portfolio companies through the occasional downturn."
The fund has already made two investments worth a total of about $5 million. It has bought Sydney-based mobile phone software firm uiActive and Brisbane-based wireless technology company Microwave and Materials Design.
Christiansen said five further deals were nearing completion.
IFM senior investment manager for private equity Judith Smith said IFM's decision to invest in the Southern Cross Fund reflected a continued and growing interest in early-stage venture capital in Australia.
"IFM believes that the Australian early-stage technology sector will provide rewarding returns from Australian-originated technologies," Smith said.
- Australian bonds: tread carefully
- Creating super fund alpha
- Retirement income innovation must be inclusive
- Weighing up default fund insurance
- Don’t neglect developed markets
- Hunting for ‘preferred infrastructure’
- Westfield: a failure of engagement
- Can Europe avoid Japan’s fate?
- Cleaning up with clean technology
- Obsession with fees hurting retirees
- LGS appoints new property portfolio manager
- HFA Holdings appoints new director
- AIA Australia CEO joins FSC board
- Investa Office Fund manager steps down
- Bennelong appoints national account manager
- CFSGAM expands Aussie equity team
- Lifeplan appoints national BDM
- Cuscal appoints CFO
- Bravura expands strategy director’s role
- Sunsuper expands investment team