Taiwanese computer hardware and mobile phone giant ASUS today announced a partnership with Silicon Valley-based venture capital firm Fenox Venture Capital (Fenox VC) to launch a US$50 million fund for tech companies.
The partnership will serve as a gateway for ASUS to access startups through the VC’s network. In turn, ASUS will collaborate with the startups and provide them with access to the greater Asian and global markets.
The fund will focus on startups in the areas of artificial intelligence (AI), internet-of-things (IoT), big data, cloud, and AR/VR.
It will also focus on other related technologies that require hardware-software integration and can benefit from collaboration with ASUS.
The fund will be stage-agnostic and it is looking to invest “a few hundred thousands dollars” into early-stage startups and “a few million dollars” to late-stage startups. It is also open for investing follow-on funding.
When asked about any specific target market or location for the startups, Fenox VC General Partner and CEO Anis Uzzaman explained to e27 in an email that the fund will focus on “the global markets.”
“It will look for top technology startups not only in the Silicon Valley, but also in Asia and Europe,” he wrote.
“We are already in the process of talking to several startups in the US and in Asia that stand high potential to receive initial investments from this ASUS fund,” he added.
Apart from operating in areas of interest as defined by ASUS, to raise an investment from this fund, Uzzaman said that the startups should be “technologically strong.”
“… Or at least should have the potential, vision, and capability to grow further technically and be able to work with ASUS hand-in-hand. We will be considering such startups at a global Level,” he said.
Uzzaman also explained about Fenox VC’s role as a “matchmaker” between the startups and the ASUS team.
“Fenox’s role would be identify the best strategic startups for ASUS, run due diligence on them and to invest in them. After investment, Fenox will introduce the startup to the ASUS team so that the startups can collaborate with them,” he said.
In a press statement, ASUS also stated that it will ensure intellectual property protection for the startups in the fund’s portfolio.
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