Fund manager appointed for the $50 million SA Venture Capital Fund

6 July

Blue Sky Venture Capital, one of Australia’s leading venture capital fund managers, has been selected to manage the State Government’s 15 year, $50 million South Australian Venture Capital Fund (SAVCF). The appointment follows an extensive tender and evaluation process.

The SAVCF will support local ventures with high growth potential to secure funding and accelerate growth into national and global markets, stimulating economic growth and job creation in South Australia.

Blue Sky Venture Capital will expand its office in Adelaide, with employees dedicated to the SAVCF, who will work alongside local businesses and organisations to identify high growth potential South Australian companies for investment and help attract additional private sector funding from national and international investors.

Blue Sky Venture Capital provides venture capital to businesses in domestic and international markets, investing in companies across a range of industries, including e-commerce, consumer technology, medical devices and specialty pharmaceuticals. Blue Sky Venture Capital has a strong track record of performance, delivering a 25.4% gross internal rate of return compounding since 2006 and is in the top quartile of Venture Capital Fund Managers globally.

Blue Sky Venture Capital is a subsidiary of ASX-listed Blue Sky Alternative Investments Limited (Blue Sky). Blue Sky has offices across Australia and in New York with strong networks to ‘angel’ investors, high net worth investors, self-managed superannuation funds and institutional investors, including industry superannuation funds. The company has more than $3 billion in assets under management and has invested more than $250 million in South Australian businesses that employ approximately 1000 people.

Dr Elaine Stead, Head of Venture Capital at Blue Sky Venture Capital, will lead the management of the SAVCF. Dr Stead is from South Australia and has more than 10 years’ experience as a venture capitalist, specialising in technology commercialisation.

Premier Jay Weatherill said he was pleased to announce Blue Sky Venture Capital as the Fund Manager for the State Government’s $50 million South Australian Venture Capital Fund.

“The Venture Capital Fund will support our innovative businesses to become more competitive and reach new markets, stimulating economic activity and job creation for our state through government and private sector co-investment,” Mr Weatherill said.

“This means an additional $50 million in external capital will be made available to support innovative South Australian companies.”

Manufacturing and Innovation Minister Kyam Maher said the Venture Capital Fund is structured as a unique co-investment fund that enables the State Government to invest alongside private venture capital funds to assist innovative local ventures with high growth potential.

“This fund will turbo charge venture capital attraction to South Australia, providing a strong incentive for investors to look at opportunities in our state,” Mr Maher said.

“The State Government is committed to supporting local entrepreneurs through our extensive support programs for innovation such as the $10 million SA Early Commercialisation Fund and the $7.6 million GigCity Adelaide ultra-fast internet.”

Dr Stead the company was delighted to have been appointed by the South Australian Government to manage this long-term, $50 million commitment to innovation.

“Blue Sky has a long history of partnering with South Australian businesses, and we are excited about applying our venture capital expertise to help early stage companies realise their full growth potential in national and international markets,” Dr Stead said.

“Blue Sky understands that a strong and engaged ecosystem is critical to success and we are looking forward to playing an active, hands on role in supporting the dynamic South Australian start-up sector.

“Start-ups under two years old are responsible for 90% of net positive jobs growth across Australia. We are confident that the SAVCF will be an important catalyst for job creation in South Australia.”