Venture capital Kickstart Ventures Inc. plans to speed up the deployment of a $180 million fund to support the growth of startups, particularly in agriculture and mobility.

Kickstart, owned by Ayala-led Globe Telecom Inc, looks to issue all of the $180 million capital from the Ayala Corp. Technology Innovation Venture (ACTIVE) Fund by 2025.

In an interview with reporters, Kickstart president Minette Navarrete said ACTIVE Fund is being used to provide initial capital and follow-on funding for startups.

Once depleted, Kickstart seeks to launch another fund, its fourth in history, that will be extended to startups in need of a budget for expansion. However, Navarrete said the firm has yet to decide how much the next fund would be.

Kickstart vice president for investments Joan Yao said the venture capital would first identify what pain points it wants to address down the line. Afterward, it can begin planning how much budget has to be injected in the fourth fund.

'When we cross that bridge, we have to think about problems that we want to solve, where do we want to invest and from there we decide how big of a knife we want to bring to the fight,' Yao said.

At present, Kickstart maintains a total of three funds: Fund 1 and Fund 2, obtained from Globe, totaling $2.4 million and $50 million, respectively, while ACTIVE Fund amounts to $180 million.

Yao said Kickstart has made investments in 12 startups through ACTIVE Fund and wants to use the rest of the capital to bankroll food and transport ideas.

For instance, Yao wants to see a startup try to organize the network of buses and UV Express in Metro Manila. Likewise, Kickstart hopes that startups can make technology play a larger role in the production and distribution of agricultural products.

'Wouldn't it be great if we organize a UV Express or bus network? Let us maximize these assets that we have. If you think about what Grab does, it is like that. So I would love to see something like that, organizing our existing transport systems,' Yao said


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