Sri Lanka Angel Fund to back start-ups in underserved areas

ECONOMYNEXT – A newly set up Angel Fund will support start-ups across Sri Lanka helping entrepreneurs in underserved regions with both funds and knowledge, its promoters Lankan Angel Network said.

“Startups have begun emerging from every corner of the island,” Lankan Angel Network Chief Executive Chalinda Abeykoon said in a statement.

“Yet, while the number of startups has grown, access to capital is still restricted by its scarcity, exclusivity and high cost.

“This hinders growth and will eventually cause a higher than average incidence of startup failure. The Angel Fund hopes to disrupt these challenges by democratizing the fundraising process and giving our startups a leg up so they can better succeed.”

LAN’s fund management team will identify opportunities around Sri Lanka including “traditionally underserved regions,” the statement said.

The 100 million rupee Angel Fund has been built with million rupee contributions from 100 individuals, Sri Lankan expatriates from Singapore, UK, Canada and USA, make up over 15 percent.

LAN Board members who have personally invested in the fund would also contribute knowledge.

“Today, most startups lack Smart Money (Wealth and Knowledge),” said Hanif Yousuf, Patron, patron of LAN was quoted as saying in the statement.

The Angel Fund, which is exclusively made up of 100 high net worth smart investors, aims to fill this void by helping small and medium sized enterprises/startups to accelerate growth.

“Through this Fund, startups can now have access to the investor’s sector knowledge and contacts, have better discipline due to outside scrutiny and access to BA mentoring/management skills.

“The 100 high net worth investors will be a great resource pool.”

LAN Chairman Mano Sekaram said the 100 individual contributors to the fund are among the best minds of Sri Lanka. (Colombo/Mar10/2020)