Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 25 March 2019

Abu Dhabi Financial Group invests in venture capital firm 500 Startups

Capital injection allows ADFG to boost its tech portfolio

Abu Dhabi Financial Group invests in US-based venture capital firm 500 Startups. The National
Abu Dhabi Financial Group invests in US-based venture capital firm 500 Startups. The National

Abu Dhabi Financial Group, which manages more than $6 billion in assets, has invested in US-based venture capital firm 500 Startups, as it seeks to broaden its tech portfolio.

ADFG has made a "significant investment" in the San Francisco-based firm that manages $400 million in capital, it said in a statement on Tuesday. It will be injecting "substantial capital" to accelerate 500 Startups' major initiatives, expand into new markets and anchor future funds. The company declined to disclose the value of the deal.

"500 gains access to deals in global markets that many traditional VCs do not," Jassim Alseddiqi, chief executive of ADFG, said. "This investment will complement ADFG’s existing technology initiatives."


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The investment builds on past tie-ups where ADFG was a limited partner in 500 Startups' previous funds. It allows ADFG to expand on its tech initiatives that include Algorythma, which develops products focused on artificial intelligence, block chain, media, and finance technology. The Abu Dhabi company also has Krypto Labs, an incubator that funds early stage startups. Following the investment, Saleh Al Hashemi, chief executive of Algorythma, will join 500 Startups board of officers, according to the statement. In December, Alseddiqi told Bloomberg his firm is seeking to acquire other asset managers as part of its expansion strategy.

500 Startups, which oversees more than $400 million in committed capital, has invested in over 2000 companies in 60 countries through four global funds and 13 funds aimed at specific markets. Its portfolio includes US education-technology firm Udemy and communication software maker Twilio.

The ADFG investment will help the venture capital firm to accelerate its growth and invest in more "promising" companies, Christine Tsai, chief executive and founding partner of 500 Startups, said.

Updated: April 3, 2018 07:59 PM



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