Future Planet Capital Pledge up to £30m for Tsinghua University Spinouts

FPC Chairman, Lord Norman Foster and Executive Chairman, Douglas Hansen-Luke present x-lab's Bluepha with the 2017 Future Planet Award for Sustainable Growth.

FPC Chairman, Lord Norman Foster and Executive Chairman, Douglas Hansen-Luke present x-lab's Bluepha with the 2017 Future Planet Award for Sustainable Growth.

Future Planet Capital (FPC), a London-based investor which funds innovative startups, has announced it will invest up to £30m in businesses spinning out from China's Tsinghua University.

Tsinghua University's X-lab is a platform which supports and facilitates startups founded by Tsinghua alumni, students or faculties. Since its launch in 2013, it has worked with more than 1190 project teams and incorporated over 480 companies.

FPC's investments will be focused on the ideas working to profitably tackle global challenges such as climate change, education, health and security.

HM Treasury Announces Future Planet Capital partnership with Tsinghua University's x-lab

Around £1.4 billion worth of commercial deals, an agreement to accelerate the final preparations for the London-Shanghai Stock Connect initiative and new commitments to develop work on the Mutual Recognition of Funds and a bond connect, have been announced as part of the 9th UK-China Economic and Financial Dialogue (EFD) held in Beijing this weekend.

Included is the announcement that Future Planet Capital will be the international investment partner of Tsinghua x-lab, Tsinghua Univeristy's cross-faculty incubator. Since its launch in April 2013, Tsinghua’s x-lab has grown rapidly, working with over 1000 project teams and incorporating over 420 companies. The incubator helps companies from across sectors at all stages of development. 

Future Planet Capital announces Partnership with Owl Ventures

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Future Planet Capital, the world’s first global platform to invest in leading universities and the “centres of innovation” that surround them, announces a limited partnership investment in Owl Ventures, a world-leading venture capital fund that invests in education technology companies. Owl Ventures will be Future Planet Capital’s strategic partner in the education sector.

Based in San Francisco and founded in 2014, Owl Ventures closed its $185m second fund in October 2017. Owl Ventures has invested in numerous fast growing transformative companies such as Accelerate Learning, a comprehensive digital PreK-12 STEM curriculum; Lingo Live, a language and communications programme; Quizlet, one of the largest educational platforms in the world; and RaiseMe, an online scholarship platform. 

The Budget: Where are the International Investors?

Excellent news for British Innovation this week as the Chancellor unveiled measures to unlock over £20bn of new investment in British technology. Many of the pledges were in response to the Treasury's Patient Capital Review (read our submission here) and included £2.5bn seed funding for a British Business Bank incubated patient capital fund, measures to facilitate pension fund access to innovation and the doubling of EIS investment limits.

“A fantastic budget for British Innovation, but once again British Parliament's parochial attitude comes through," Douglas Hansen-Luke, Executive Chairman of Future Planet Capital. told Private Equity News. "Neither British Taxpayers nor British Pension Funds need to fund this; there are countless international investors queuing up to invest in British Innovation. At Future Planet Capital, we are unlocking international capital, eager to invest with Britain’s top universities and research centres. This brings money into the U.K. and boosts our economy; the government should do more to facilitate this kind of inward investment, not least in light of the EIF’s likely withdrawal of future funding.”

The Budget: Fully Driverless Cars on UK Roads by 2021

This week, Chancellor Philip Hammond's Autumn Budget announced government support for driverless cars. Amid pledges of £540m to electric and autonomous vehicles, he told the House of Commons "Our future vehicles will be driverless". This comes after comments earlier in the week assuring regulatory changes that would allow fully autonomous cars on British roads by 2021.

“The Chancellor was right to give the go-ahead for driverless cars," Douglas Hansen-Luke, Executive Chairman of Future Planet Capital told Reuters in response to the news. "A human driving a lethal weapon is not a good idea. Road deaths are the world’s biggest cause of premature death with over 1.2 million dying annually. Automated cars are far safer than people.”

“What the budget doesn’t address, however, are the approximately 140 million employed globally as professional drivers. Any government support of artificial intelligence and robots needs to simultaneously take account of likely job losses.”

Managers hard at work on sustainable development

As a number of pension funds around the world come to grips with implementing the United Nations' 17 sustainable development goals into their portfolios, money managers have also been working away in the background.

Despite the work by some high-profile institutional investors, some managers said they are not yet getting questions from their clients.

"Clients are not bringing it up with us directly yet, but companies are," said Will Oulton, global head, responsible investment at First State Investments in London. "We have seen companies quite proactive in saying, 'We're going to report on how contributing to the SDGs is most relevant to our sector,'" he said. 

Patient Capital? Time for a national database to match investors with innovators

Last November, the Treasury launched the Patient Capital Review.

Its aim was to identify the barriers that innovative companies may face in gaining access to long term, supportive finance.

It is being overseen by an A list of entrepreneurs and investment experts, chaired by former Permira head Sir Damon Buffini, who are supremely well-qualified to define the issue and recommend solutions.

University start-ups aim for the Facebook formula - The Financial Times

Earlier this year, Future Planet Capital, a global innovation platform, announced the launch of a $39m British Innovation Fund, designed to focus on the “commercialisation of research emerging out of UK universities”.

“For us, innovation is a new and profitable way of doing things,” says co-founder Douglas Hansen-Luke. “We’re looking for projects with the potential to work and make a profit.”

Future Planet also acts as a platform for some of the world’s largest sovereign wealth funds, scouting opportunities among emerging talent at universities around the globe.

How the first global university venture fund hopes to change the world

Future Planet Capital wants to connect investors to startups to help solve the biggest issues facing the planet.

The world's first global university venture fund was founded in 2015 to connect major investors, startups and academics to develop commercially viable technology that addresses challenges around climate change, health, sustainability, education, or security.

Future Planet Capital press release: Tuesday 23rd May 2017

Today, Future Planet Capital hosted an inaugural awards ceremony honouring the best start-ups across five categories at the Global Corporate Venturing Symposium.

The overall winner, PragmatIC, was picked by a judging panel chaired by world-renowned architect Lord Foster, with other panel members including education reformer Lord Nat Wei, Patrick Chung, founding partner of Xfund, Nick Greenwood, Fund Manager, Royal County of Berkshire Pension Fund and Jim Wilkinson, CEO, Oxford Sciences Innovation.

Future Planet Capital press release: Tuesday 16 May 2017

DMS Governance ("DMS"), the world's leading fund governance firm, is delighted to announce the addition of Future Planet Fund 1 (the "Fund") to its DMS QIAIF Platform ICAV. This is a global innovation fund, connecting the world's biggest investors to the best minds, to profitably address the world's greatest challenges.  The investment objective is to maximize long-term capital gains by providing multi-stage investment in technology and life science firms.  The Fund will invest in innovations that (i) are relatively immune to macroeconomic factors, (ii) reduce unrewarded risks, (iii) are scalable and have a proven business model.

Future Planet Capital press release: Thursday 27 April 2017

Congenica, a world leader in clinical genomics software for inherited diseases, today announced completion of its recently announced Series B funding round with additional investments from new strategically important investors BGI Genomics (BGI), a recognized global leader in genomics, Healthlink Capital (Healthlink), another well-established China-based life-science investor and Future Planet Capital, a global innovation fund.

Pensions & Investments: Berkshire Pension Fund makes seed investment in U.K. university innovation fund

Royal County of Berkshire Pension Fund, Maidenhead, England, committed £15 million ($18.9m) and is the seed investor in a new strategy to direct institutional capital into the commercialisation of U.K. university innovation.

The British Innovation Fund was launched by Future Planet Capital and Milltrust International Group.

I&PE: Berkshire invests in commercialisation of UK university research

The UK’s £1.9bn (€2.3bn) Royal County of Berkshire Pension Fund is to invest £15m in a new fund aiming to direct institutional capital into the commercialisation of UK university research.

The local authority pension fund committed the £15m to the British Innovation Fund (BIF), launched on 1 December by Future Planet Capital and Milltrust International Group.

The fund has received commitments of £30m so far.

Future Planet Capital announces participation in funding for Oxford Science Innvoation.

Future Planet Capital is pleased to announce its participation in the third close of funding for Oxford Sciences Innovation plc alongside some of Asia's largest companies and investors.

OSI, which was formed in May 2015, has raised an additional £230m from new and existing investors. With nearly £600m now available to invest in spin-outs from Oxford’s science departments, OSI is believed to be the world’s largest university innovation investor.

Pursuing Innovation: Sovereign Wealth Funds and Technology Investment

The past three years have seen Sovereign Wealth Funds (SWF) capturing headlines for high-profile investments in innovative technology businesses. The Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia may have made the most noise in 2016 with its attention-grabbing $3.5 billion Uber stake and, more recently, a collaboration with Softbank on a "$100 billion" tech-focused venture capital fund. Yet such announcements are merely the tip of the iceberg. 

British University Venture Funds: Going further, faster

The road from laboratory to industry is a time consuming and long one, but the rise of a raft of new university venture funds (UVFs) in Britain is helping to transform the innovation landscape. Britain is home to an increasing number of venture capital funds committed to turning innovative ideas from academic organisations and associated clusters into world class companies.

Tsinghua Berkeley Shenzhen Institute (TBSI) and Future Planet Capital (FPC) Launch New Innovative Partner Model

Tsinghua News Network July 5 power July 1. Tsinghua - Berkeley Shenzhen Institute (TBSI) and Future Planet Capital (FPC) in the East Room of the Office of the word Tsinghua University signed an agreement on the cultivation and within China and worldwide accelerate innovation Investment cooperation letter of intent. Berkeley dean of Tsinghua University Professor KANG Feiyu Shenzhen and Future Planet Capital Executive Chairman Douglas · Mr. Hansen-Luke (Douglas Hansen-Luke) on behalf of the two sides signed a memorandum. Yang Bin, vice president of Tsinghua University attended the signing ceremony and delivered a speech.