Investing: Zino Ventures - the first Chinese angel fund in New Zealand
With the tagline as - investing and enabling New Zealand start-ups to succeed in China's market, and launched late last year, Zino Ventures marks the first Chinese Angel Fund in New Zealand. A brain-child of 18 Chinese entrepreneurs who have pooled together $2 million, the company aims to invest in up to 20 start-ups over the next three years.
It has the support 2 cornerstone angels, The Icehouse, which is a New Zealand business growth organisation, and the ICE Angels, a angel network in New Zealand.
Explaining the meaning of Zino, the company says, "Zino's name is based on Latin word 'Sino', which refers to China and Chinese history. The 'Z' stands for New Zealand."
"The financial empowerment from Chinese community is getting to be a core component of economic development in New Zealand. Zino Ventures is an investor-based fund focused on building investor knowledge and dedicated to investing in early stage businesses that have the potential to succeed in the global market," it adds.
"We believe that Zino Ventures will empower New Zealand entrepreneurs, strengthen their competitiveness to become the next unicorn, and maximise the success of New Zealand’s small business engine for greater economic growth in the long term. We hope to inspire the seasoned investor – men and women – to invest in Kiwi’s leading start-ups and attract new investors that can actively participate and bring to bear tangible value to the success of New Zealand’s start-ups and benefit financial returns over time."
New Kiwi Challenge
To encourage more new Kiwis to take on entrepreneurship, Zino Ventures is starting a nation-wide start-up challenge in May with sponsors including The Icehouse and ICE Angels. Being the first Chinese Angel Fund in New Zealand, Zino Ventures wants to leverage its network and expertise of investors to enable investee start-ups to take on China’s market. The announcement will be made in May at the Tech Week, and the competition will be open for 3 months, with the final selection in August at a pitch event combined with the ICE Angels investment evening.