ABN AMRO has launched a 425 million euro fund that is investing in companies accelerating the transition towards a sustainable and inclusive society. With this Sustainable Impact Fund (SIF), ABN AMRO also wants to offer a solution for companies that are in need for equity investment.
ABN AMRO SIF will make private equity investments of 4 to 30 million euros in companies that have a proven business model and that are ready for the next phase of their growth. The fund will also make venture capital investments ranging from 500,000 euros to 4 million euros in companies with a proven concept. Three themes have been selected for these investments: the circular economy, the energy transition and social impact. The fund, which is owned and funded by ABN AMRO, has its own investment policy and will pursue a combination of social and financial returns.
Rutger van Nouhuijs of ABN AMRO’s Executive Committee explains, “Our bank finances countless sustainable initiatives, in the form of loans and credit. However, in some situations, companies need equity investments. Our new fund is able to offer this as a solution. Companies that link sustainable returns to a strong business plan can apply to ABN AMRO SIF.”
Wind turbines, smartglasses, and sustainable urban logistics
The first investments have already been made. At the end of 2020, ABN AMRO provided private equity funding to Fiberline Composites A/S, a Danish company that is developing a specific technology to increase the size of rotor blades for wind turbines. This investment was made by the Energy Transition Fund ETF), which becomes part of ABN AMRO SIF. ETF acquired 34% of the shares in the Danish company. With this transaction Fiberline will have the financial power to expand its activities internationally.
The new fund made its first two venture capital investments last month, in Envision and Foodlogica. Envision is a Dutch company that develops software for ‘smartglasses’. Combined with an app and innovative AI technology, the glasses translate images and written text into sound to make life more accessible for the visually impaired. Foodlogica solves the challenge of last-mile transport of refrigerated food in densely populated cities with a sustainable fleet that is free of greenhouse gas emissions.
The Netherlands and other countries nearby
In terms of geography, the new fund will focus on the Netherlands, but also companies from other countries in Northwestern Europe are eligible for investments. The fund reflects ABN AMRO’s strategic direction, which includes sustainability and a European focus as its key components.
New and mature companies
With the fund investing both private equity and venture capital, early-stage enterprises as well as established companies qualify for investment through this fund. Rutger van Nouhuijs adds, “What we want is to provide a solid financial basis for companies with potential that will help to accelerate the transition towards a sustainable society.” Source: ABN AMRO