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SEAF Bangladesh Ventures

SEAF Bangladesh Ventures is a Permanent Capital Vehicle focused on building mid-size businesses with significant opportunities for scaling up in Bangladesh

 

The vehicle was originally launched as a fund in 2010 to provide small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Bangladesh with structured capital and quasi-equity investments. At the time, it was the first company to focus exclusively on providing growth and working capital to companies of this size in Bangladesh. 

SEAF Bangladesh Ventures (SEAF BV) was originally conceived through the International Finance Corporation’s (IFC) SME Ventures Program – an initiative designed to support risk capital financing to SMEs in underserved emerging markets. In May of 2017, the Fund received a follow-on commitment of USD 10 million from the IFC and Climate Investment Funds-Pilot Programme for Climate Resilience (CIF-PPCR). CIF-PPCR is allocating capital in the form of grants and financing to Bangladesh, which is targeted to “enable Bangladesh to make strategic investments in critical areas of climate resilience planning and implementation in a manner consistent with its poverty reduction and sustainable development objectives.”

 

Fund Term

10

years from first close

Target Fund Size

70

million dollars

Deal Size

3 - 7

million dollars

Investment Strategy

  • SEAF BV aims to capitalize on Bangladesh’s strategic geographic location between India and China and its attractive demographic trends by providing technical assistance and investment into growing SMEs in key sectors that represent strong growth opportunities but have lacked access to traditional sources of finance.
  • The Fund will invest growth capital in 12-15 growing mid-size businesses with significant opportunities for scaling up for both market returns and social impact.
  • Investments will generally be completed through equity instruments – ordinary or preferred equity – with dividends, board participation and minority protections, including exit rights

Investment Thesis

  • Highly attractive macroeconomic theme of Bangladesh with GDP growing more than 7%  – the highest in Southeast Asia – and high demographic dividend with growing middle class driving strong domestic consumption
  • Financing gap for SMEs estimated by the World Bank to be $2.8 billion. Medium-sized businesses are positioned to expand rapidly supported by overall infrastructure development and robust domestic consumer demand but lack institutional private equity financing.
  • Inflation under control and FDI growing by + 20 % CAGR over the previous 5 years
  • Adult literacy rate is increasing rapidly, reached 74% in 2018; and internet penetration – currently at 55% – is growing
  • The fund will address the UN Sustainable Development Goals, including #2 Zero Hunger, #3 Good Health and Wellbeing, #4 Quality Education, #5 Gender Equality, #6 Clean Water and Sanitation, #7 Affordable and Clean Energy, #8 Decent Work and Economic Growth, #9 Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure, #10 Reduced Inequalities, #11 Sustainable Cities and Communities, #12 Responsible Consumption and Production and #13 Climate Action.
SEAF Bangladesh Ventures Placeholder
SEAF Bangladesh Ventures

Region: Asia

Location(s): Bangladesh

Start Date: 2010

Status: Active

Committed Capital: $22 Million

Investor(s): International Finance Corporation (IFC), Climate Investment Funds-Pilot Programme for Climate Resilience

Managing Director: Asif Mahmood

Investment Focus: Bangladeshi SMEs

Targeted Instrument: Equity or quasi-equity

Investment Approach: Control or significant minority stake

Local Team

Asif Mahmood - Managing Director - Dhaka

Asif Mahmood
Fund Managing Director

Asif joined SEAF as Managing Director for SEAF Bangladesh Ventures in May 2017. His responsibilities include managing a diverse portfolio of funds and assisting in raising new funds for Bangladesh Ventures. He is the founder and Chairman of ADN Group, one of the largest Information and Communications Technology (ICT) business organizations in Bangladesh. Asif started his first venture in 1990. Today, he has 30 years of experience in ICT and technology through his numerous start-ups, all of which are now established corporations. He helped build the country’s first workforce of IT engineering in early 1990’s and his work with ICT has made inroads for global technology giants like Cisco, Sun Microsystems and Oracle in Bangladesh. He is an active member of the Dhaka Chamber of Commerce & Industry, the Korea-Bangladesh Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the Wireless Internet Broadband Association, the Bangladesh Association of Call Centre & Outsourcing and the Internet Service Providers’ Association of Bangladesh. Asif holds a B.Sc. in Engineering from NIT Durgapur, India and has attended many executive development programs in leadership, Strategy, Negotiation, Governance in many countries around the world.

Nurul Hai - Dhaka

Nurul Hai
Vice President

Nurul Hai joined SEAF in 2018 as the Vice President of SEAF Bangladesh Ventures. His primary focus is leading investment transactions and client activities in Bangladesh. He has nine years of experience in investment management and research. Prior to joining SEAF, Nurul led research and investment for some of the top investment management companies in Bangladesh. His expertise spans active investment management and investment due diligence. Nurul holds an MBA in Finance from the Institute of Business Administration, University of Dhaka; and a BBA in Finance from the Faculty of Business Studies, University of Dhaka.

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Md. Aminur Rahman
Chief Financial Officer

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Muhammad Maruf Hossain
Assistant Vice President, Sourcing & Monitoring

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Md. Asaduzzaman
Assistant Vice President, Admin & HR

Saddam Khan Sumit_Analyst_Dhaka

Saddam Khan Sumit
Associate

Based in Bangladesh, Saddam Khan Sumit is working as an associate at SEAF Bangladesh Ventures. He joined in 2017 and is primarily responsible for potential deal sourcing, conducting investment due diligence on potential companies, assist in deal closing and supervision of portfolio companies. His expertise includes research, financial modelling & projection, analyzing financial information of portfolio companies, drafting and writing investment memos. Sumit holds an MBA in finance from the School of Business & Economics, North South University, Bangladesh. Prior to that, he completed his BBA in Finance & Accounting from School of Business & Economics, North South University.