Australia gets its first listed fintech investment fund

Elizabeth Barry 31 August 2016

h2 ventures

H2Ocean is seeking to raise at least $22,500,000 to focus on developing an early and growth stage venture capital portfolio.

H2 Ventures, a dedicated accelerator and fintech investment firm, has launched H2Ocean, Australia's first listed venture company. H2 Ventures, which also happens to be Australia's first dedicated fintech accelerator, is already very active in the fintech space but aims to expand this with its latest venture.

Co-founders Ben and Tony Heap aim to raise between $22,500,000 and $55,000,000 to deliver capital growth to investors and provide an investment alternative to traditional equities through a diversified portfolio.

"H2Ocean Shareholders will gain investment exposure to early and growth stage Fintech Ventures that would otherwise be difficult to access while the H2Ocean investment portfolio may also provide a hedge against traditional bank and insurance investments that are at risk of digital disruption," Ben and Tony said in a letter to prospective investors on the company website.

"We are the founding partners of H2 Ventures Pty Ltd ("the Manager") and are experienced fintech investors. We bring over 30 years of expertise with respect to financial services and principal investment to the Company, we have reviewed a significant number of potential fintech investment opportunities and believe we are well positioned to understand the risks involved in this form of early and growth stage investing."

The prospectus, which has now been lodged with ASIC, lists three independent directors that are all active in the fintech space – David Koch, Beyond Bank chair Anne O'Donnell and former Assistant Innovation Minister Wyatt Roy.

The company itself will be responsible for finding and investing in fintech companies, but according to the letter to investors, "The company will typically invest in ventures that have completed an accelerator or incubator program."

With both having experience in an accelerator focused on fintech startups, the Heap brothers are in a good position to drive Australia's investment in fintech forward.

"We are passionate about the opportunities that are presented by founders and entrepreneurs and we believe that H2Ocean will be a valuable partner for these individuals' as they build the businesses that will shape the financial services sector of tomorrow."

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Image: H2 Ventures

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